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TRIBEWORK is about consuming the process of life, the journey, together.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Courage is the Hardest Thing


People unconsciously wonder what it’ll take to be happy, content, able, responsible, to be at peace, and to be loved, and a myriad of other things. The thing that stands between us and our obtaining of those things, I’d suggest, is courage.
What if it was simply courage that stood in our way? What if courage was all we needed to ignite our capacity? Even if we accepted this we’d not brim the joy.
That’s because courage is the hardest thing. Even if we could see that courage was the key to unlock our problems of faith and adhering to the truth and seeking an acceptable love, we’d shrink, because we intuitively know it’s hard going.
Let’s explore this further in the ways of faith, truth, and love.
The Way Of Faith And Its Reliance On Courage
People who have faith necessarily have courage. One doesn’t go without the other. And whilst many may believe faith is ‘what’ we believe, the faith required of the Christian—in order to please God (Hebrews 11:6)—is operating in the application of their faith: what they do.
Faith is a doing thing.
If we’re courageous and go forth upon the things our hearts are calling us to do, we redeem the blessings of faith, which aren’t always seen for what they are, for they’re often costly. But the way of courage is definitely the way of faith; the opposite is also true.
The Way Of Truth And Its Significance In Defining Courage
We cannot be courageous, not fully so, if we don’t stick to the truth. This is impossibly hard in many of our relationships; those that have been set up on wobbly rocks—just about all our relationships have some frailties.
In social situations, most of all, we’re tested for courage by our compromises regarding the truth, and almost every compromise has us feeling guilty or ashamed (or some other negative emotion) as we reflect. By not living up to the truth we didn’t achieve our potential. We become our own hardest critics.
Perhaps we didn’t know how to hold the situations in truth. Some situations, as we’ve mentioned, are impossible. Many times the truth cannot safely be held. These are just the social realities of life. This is another reason why courage is the hardest thing.
The Way Of Love And Its Need Of Courage
Whether it’s romantic or not, it takes an enormous amount of courage to express our true feelings of love. We fear rejection and we also fear exposing ourselves in the performance of love.
The first fear is outcome-based. We don’t want to be reminded that there exists within each of us, deeper below, a part that has been rejected; a part of ourselves we feel is worthy of rejection, no less. If the issue of truth came to bear, nothing of our core beings is worthy of rejection—God loves us unconditionally.
The second fear is process-based. We fear performing our spoken and unspoken acts of love because we might come across fake, or it won’t come out right, or for many other reasons.
Love requires courage to complete it. When we’re courageous we can love, and we’re good lovers.
***
Courage is the thing that stands between us and our goals, for happiness, peace, and the achievement of love. Because it’s a hard thing to do we need to gently nurture it; not being critical of our failures in courage. If there’s one thing we can pray for most of all it’s to have more courage.
© 2012 S. J. Wickham.
Graphic Credit: Marte Marie Forsberg.

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