Deciding to live vulnerable with God
* A little ending that fits on almost any word to increase its cool factor.
Deciding to live vulnerable with God
* A little ending that fits on almost any word to increase its cool factor.
I can’t spare you the vulnerability of the complications of dating. I believe in dating. I believe in both of you meeting at a neutral location for a planned event that both of you will enjoy, grow and be romanced at. I believe you will learn a lot about you and you will be fascinated about this other person–even if he/she turns out to be a drip. I believe dating is not always romantic and rarely easy. It is most always complicated. I can’t sugarcoat this truth. You have to be vulnerable with a stranger. There is that big part of dating again–vulnerability. It is simply a part of dating you can’t avoid. You want to have you be the one a future someone falls in love with which means that someone has to vulnerably know you. Not all of you on that first coffee date though! Just part of you so this stranger knows enough about you to want to see you again. Of course, the stranger you are on this coffee date is most likely someone you know at least a little bit but he/she is new enough to your circle of life that you have to brave […]
We’ve got this story in the book of Luke. As Jesus continued on toward Jerusalem, he reached the border between Galilee and Samaria. As he entered a village there, ten men with leprosy stood at a distance, crying out, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!” He looked at them and said, “Go show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed of their leprosy. One of them, when he saw that he was healed, came back to Jesus, shouting, “Praise God!” He fell to the ground at Jesus’ feet, thanking him for what he had done. This man was a Samaritan. Jesus asked, “Didn’t I heal ten men? Where are the other nine? Has no one returned to give glory to God except this foreigner?” And Jesus said to the man, “Stand up and go. Your faith has healed you. Luke 17:11-19 What happened to the other nine? Maybe some were too busy to be thankful. They planned to express thanks. But first they needed to find family members, friends, Jesus did say go to the priests, right? I blame Jesus. Not really. How could they forget gratefulness when they got their lives back? Every day would […]
Let me repeat myself yet again and again and again. You need to date with a team. These are the chosen people who “get” you and also want the best for you. Let them help you in all their ways to find this great match for you. I’m sure I will repeat this again as it is that important. I’m pretty sure about every other Brave Dating Coach blog mentions the importance of having a team involved in your life. Another brave dating practice I encourage—though is entirely optional—is putting yourself on an online dating site. This is solely to get your numbers up to meet new people. This may not be for everyone but it is a resource. I found another stat read that I love so much and it combines your team’s involvement in your life and online dating. No wonder I loved it. From a survey from the actual app developer (so yes, this one may be skewed a bit), 90 percent of Millennials said they would enjoy playing matchmaker for their friends. (Go team!) Almost 70 percent said they thought the matches they would make for their friends would be better than if their friends continued […]
As Charlie Peacock sang, “Yellow Is A Happy Color.” Be Brave has had a lot of “heavy” blogs lately. We have been lamenting together. Pain is real. No one is exempt from pain. I identify with the pain you are walking through. Pain is your beginning. I am hoping you are choosing to let bravery define you rather than your pain. I am hoping that you are living brave decision to brave decision to brave decision, even making those little brave decisions to get out of bed in the morning. Or making the decision to stop numbing the pain. This is also amazingly true. You also get a lot of joy right now. Our brain does this “funny” thing. If we numb our pain, we also numb our joy. This was a finding in Dr. Brene’ Brown’s research. There has been a lot of pain talked about lately. Which means there is also a lot of joy. Your life also has a lot of joy. It really does. Yellow is happy color. We are declaring today a yellow day. It is mid-July. Summer is still here! And because it is mid-July I still have weeks of summer left!! That is […]
Part of Brave Dating is learning about you, particularly what you want in a match. Hopefully your team and friends and family will be of help to you to notice these things as you are learning along the way. When you figure out something, put that on your list. Or if you are a creative type, create a vision board. The vision board idea is a simple collage. If you discover you are drawn to someone who likes culture, cut out pictures of an orchestra or a museum. If you discover you cannot possibly date a smoker, find a picture of a pack of cigarettes and put a big X through it. If you want a match to be someone who will run daily with you, find a picture of running shoes. You can do this on a corkboard or some other Pinterest-type of board or you can do this digitally by pinning such pics on a Pinterest board or Photoshop creation. Or you can go simple old-timey crafty by cutting out magazine pictures and using glue. However you create this, keep this vision board in your view. You can stare at this vision regularly and use it as board […]
I love this quote from St. Augustine, Bishop of Hippo and early (354-430 AD) theologian. It speaks to the power of singing. In five words this quote gives a clear picture of the importance of singing. And I realize not all singing would do this quote justice. But singing songs of scripture, prayers, praise, worship, thankfulness and repentance would all qualify as “praying” in this context. As Christians we’re all taught the disciplines of the faith—how to pray, why we tithe, the purpose of communion, fasting, service, etc., but we’re rarely taught why we sing. And yet in many churches singing takes up as much as half of the entire Sunday service. My first twenty years as a Christian were spent in a church that at its core was musically gifted and worship-oriented and that set the tone for me to include singing and music in my daily routine. Music has been a part of my life for decades before I became a Christian, so singing (and playing instruments) in worship comes natural for me. But I know this is uncommon. Maybe you’re not as musically inclined as you’d like. Maybe you’re just not comfortable singing. Maybe you wonder why […]
Pain is your beginning. Not your end. Even though it feels like it is your end. Even though it must be your end because this is more than you can handle. If you have been a Christian for longer than a month, then I’m sure you have heard someone say, “God won’t give you more than you can handle.” Maybe someone has said this to you now as you are in this pain. The intentions were good intentions. I get it. But this is one of those “supposed to’s” that can make you angry at God. The “supposed to” stated is that God won’t give you more than you can handle. It is a poor interpretation of 1 Corinthians 10:13 that has been hijacked for a long time. Actually this promise is never promised in the Bible. I get why it got hijacked though. It would be nice to believe that we wouldn’t have to endure pain more than we can handle. That God is “supposed to” carry us through a pain which we do have strength to handle. But this is simply not true. Paul, who wrote 1 Corinthians 10:13, also wrote this recap of his life in 2 […]
True. Dating is a budget item. There is a cost to dating. It’s not all walks in the parks under rainbows. Even coffee adds up quickly. The Washington Post (my local paper) ran the Match survey about the cost of dating in 2016. Yes, it’s one of those stat reads that I love so much. I warn you now though. You may not want to read much further. The news is expensive. The average unmarried American spent $1,596 on their dating life in 2016. Of course, in some cities the average is higher. For example, in Washington, it was $1,788; in New York, $2,069. I’m guessing it is a better number in Iowa. (My family is in Minnesota, I know lots of Iowa jokes.) As you are hyperventilating about that large number and are starting to plan to never date, here are some items you probably didn’t think of that helped grow that number: bar tabs, dating site memberships, haircuts, manicures and new date outfits, entrance fees to dating events, and money spent on matchmakers. Breathe again. Your budget just became a lot more manageable and dating just became more possible. Here’s another interesting Match survey find. Who should pay […]
Good morning. I know…the morning doesn’t feel good. You feel too much actually. You certainly feel too much dread. So much dread that you don’t believe you have the strength to get out of bed. Just doing that is too much. You feel the responsibilities you have to do today. Those responsibilities just add to your dread. You are overwhelmed and the decision that seems easiest is to just stay in bed. That is the only decision you can handle right now. I’ve been here too. I want you to know that your pain is real. It hurts. It hurts so much that you don’t feel like you can get out of bed this morning. But I am asking you to. A brave life is brave decision upon brave decision upon brave decision. Even the little ones such as the decision to get out of bed today. This is a brave decision. You are risking some vulnerability to make at least one of your responsibilities today. I am here urging you to do this. A brave life is brave decision upon brave decision upon brave decision. Even the little ones . Click To Tweet Good morning. You get another day. […]
When talking to someone new, do you assume the other person is bored, uninterested, or only making conversation with you to be polite? Do you tend to notice and fixate on interactions where you feel put down or slighted? Do you tend to imagine slights from others? Do you tend to take these interactions very personally? When you enter a group of people, do you assume that you won’t fit in or that the group members would rather you weren’t there? Do you worry that people are being outwardly nice to you, but secretly do not like you? When you invite someone to connect on social media do you worry that the person will ignore your request? Do you think healthy and happy relationships come naturally to others but find it hard to imagine someone giving you the kind of love you see others receive? In conversations with others, does it seem they are criticizing you or finding fault with you? When others give you attention and seem interested in you, do you assume it’s only a matter of time before they lose interest? When there’s no conflict or problem in a relationship, do you assume it’s the beginning of […]
Brenda has been teaching the messages of Bravester for over 25 years. She is available to come to your group event. People have found her vulnerability and storytelling mixed with the Bible to be inspirational and life changing.
“You have had a significant influence on how I view brokenness, forgiveness, and the role God plays through all of that through a very difficult time in my life. Since that year at CRC, I have taken significant steps to getting bitterness out of my heart… You have had a significant impact on my life. I really do not think I would be the woman I am today if it were not for the lessons you taught me. You are a strong instrument of God and his word.” –Sara, former camp counselor and now inner-city missionary
Brenda can be joined by her husband John. They have a back-and-forth dialog that mixes in John’s beautifully written music. John is also available to lead worship for the event.
From Brenda’s 35 years of youth ministry experience, she has become a Brave Dating Coach. She has a lot of good things to say to help her many grown teens be coached into marriage. She is also available to teach on these many good things for your group event.