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.
An open letter to all those who are #OVERIT: As a white middle class Christian, I do not claim to understand the hurt of racial and religious prejudice, though I do have friends who have had first hand experiences with it. As a woman and a millennial I have had my own experiences with prejudices based on my age and sex. For so long I have remained silent stewing in my frustration because I believed my voice was not big enough to be heard. No longer though can I remain silent as so many do because it is time for the masses to stand up and say we are OVER IT. I am tired of staying silent as people who call themselves Christians go around proclaiming that they are superior because who they are and what they believe. I am tired of my African American friends being pulled over because they of the color of their skin. I am tired of hearing stories of Mosques being vandalized and Muslims being persecuted for their beliefs. I am tired of my LGBT friends being bullied and slurred because of who they love. I am tired of being harassed because I am a […]
This list could be very long. I’ll make an attempt at some of them. The memory of the first time you felt a warm sandy beach and put your toes into the ocean. The memory of when you realized a parent loved you simply because you are you and not because what you have done for this parent. The memory of when you realized you were truly loved by a friend, someone who didn’t have to love you like family but did anyway. The memory of the first time you saw the Grand Canyon. The memory of seeing your first sunset. And who you were with when you did. The memory of when you knew you were forgiven by Jesus. The memory of when you realized that Jesus loves you even in the depths of your shame. The memory of your first kiss. The memory of walking down the aisle on your wedding day. The memory of when that child tells you he/she loves you. The memory of your child coming to understand that Jesus loves him/her even in the depths of his/her shame. At the end of your life, these are the memories you want to play over and […]
To our delight our one son is still awaiting transfer from the local jail to the state prison system. It should have happened a year ago. It sounds like it is not going to happen for another year. We have no idea why. We would like to think that he is such a wonderful offender that the powers-that-be want to keep him around but he’s sitting at a security level that does not reflect that. So we are simply grateful that he continues to be this close to his support system. He is spending most of his time creating a little business with his art. Not just simple art either. This is his art—created with the limitations that jail provides.. Yes, we are amazed by his talent too. He’s not collecting cash money for his business either. That is another limitation. It is a barter of commissary. Terrill has created a huge stash of snacks, particularly this one brand of peanut butter cookies. Twice now when they’ve done contraband checks he’s lost his stash of cookies because he can’t possibly eat all that he’s bartered for. Which means there are many loved ones of fellow inmates receiving gifts of beautiful […]
A few months ago I watched a movie with the kids called “Pete’s Dragon”. I knew the story line from when I was younger as there was an old animated version. My kids fell in love with Pete just as I had as a young girl. The new movie is a beautiful story of love and friendship, but there was a song in the movie that once I heard it, the lyrics hit me hard and I cried. I knew I had to find it so I could listen to it again as I felt those words just speak to my grieving heart. The song was “Nobody Knows”, by The Lumineer’s (I love their soulful sound and how almost every one of their songs just speaks.) Here are the lyrics……(video below) Nobody knows how to say goodbye, It seems so easy ’til you try, Then the moment’s passed you by, Nobody knows how to say goodbye. Nobody knows how to get back home, And we set out so long ago, Searched the heavens and the earth below, Nobody knows how to get back home. Through the darkness to the dawn, When I looked back you were gone, Heard your voice […]
We are approaching our 2-year anniversary of offering weekly brave dating advice here. We believe in dating. We believe in dating that does not have the single focus of leading to marriage but leads to discovering who you are so you can find the match for you. We believe in: “Live your life to the full bravely following after Jesus. Now. As you are living bravely, who is keeping up with you? That is the match for you.” Which means we have brave dating practices that we believe in. This blog is just putting our core brave dating practices in one location to get you started. We have so many good blogs to choose from! But these are the core. Date with a Team Placing Yourself in Good Situations Maybe Coffee is Just Coffee (And Not Your Love of a Lifetime) Brave Dating Practice: Do Not Limit Yourself to a Type You Can Be One of Those Known as “Hard to Get” Boundaries Are Attractive—As in They Really Do Attract Others The Vulnerability in Dating Women, It’s Okay to Have a Little Vanity (You Too, Guys) Brave Dating Practice: Commit Yourself to a Local Church Say “Yes” to the Spontaneous […]
I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13 Since I’ve stumbled onto the truth of what hope is (I have chosen to set goals, my tenacity gives me room to change and revise those goals because deep down I know I’m worthy of having something good happen to me), I’ve loved this verse more and more. It states that God is our source of hope, that we can be filled completely with joy and peace because we trust in him which enables us to find the Plan B. Understanding very well that trusting God also requires vulnerability, which is where the bravery comes in. Do you ever find yourself keeping your hope for “safe things?” Do you see why you do that now? You don’t really trust God so you don’t want to become vulnerable to God and risk that disappointment again. Truth is hope is not nebulous and ethereal gifted to us from God. Hope is something we have a part of when we find our Plan B. Plan A […]
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 […]
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.