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.
Have you ever had a concept in your head and all your life you thought about it a certain way and then one day, someone suggests a different perspective and your whole world is rocked? Well, I just had this kind of experience. In Hebrews 11 and 12, the author is re-capping the stories of Old Testament heroes: Abel. Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses’s parents, Moses himself, the Israelite’s, Rahab. After listing all these people and summarizes their stories, he goes on to list several more people that he just does not have the time to talk about: Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel, and the prophets. All of these people and all of these amazingly fantastic stories of what their faith had done. Through acts of faith, they toppled kingdoms, served justice, gained what was promised. They were protected from lions, fires, and sword thrusts, had their weaknesses turned to strengths, won battles, routed alien armies. Women received their loved ones back from the dead. There were others who were tortured, refusing to be released so that they might gain an even better resurrection. Others braved abuse and whips, and, yes, chains and dungeons. We have stories […]
I was listening to this interview yesterday with author, Margaret Feinberg. She has written many Bravester-type of books. In this interview she said this, studies have shown that 70 percent of Americans believe they have a book in them. 70%!!!! I believe when it comes to Christians that number probably goes up even higher because of our personal walk with Jesus, the journey that this is which includes the pain that turns out to be a beginning. You’ve experienced trauma, loss, and pain. In the hard process of finding the healing through Christ–because you have sought supernatural intervention–you want to share that story. You know you have a story to share. You have found a way through and you desire to share that to others so they can find a way through. Do you have this story to share? Maybe you are not ready to write a book. But you do want to start by sharing your story and the great life-giving truth you have found while living through it. We have a place for you to do that here called Your Story. Your Story is user-submitted honest stories from readers who have decided to live a brave life. They have […]
My husband and I are embarking on a new and exciting journey- Buying our first house! Currently, we live in a tiny one bedroom, one bathroom detached apartment. Everyone in our town and our church calls our place the “The Little House” and that description is 100% accurate. A brief history of The Little House: I believe the original “Main House” and “Little House” were built somewhere close to 200 years ago. I assume this because of the layout of the main house and the foundation of both houses. The little house was originally built as a chicken coop and eventually was turned into a house. Pretty cool, huh? This little house is made up of one bedroom, one bathroom (that didn’t work), one closet, a kitchen/dinning room, and a living room: a total of about 400 square feet!.. And that’s being generous. When I was single and my only roommate was my dog, this house was perfect! It had everything I needed- except a working bathroom. But using the renting family’s upstairs bathroom and the laundry room in the main house lead to a pretty amazing relationship with them. Anyway- It was all I needed. But now that Bubba […]
One consistent theme in the Bible is that God pursues us. I believe that God defines love as a pursuing force that is not dependent upon my response back. God is going to continue to pursue and love me anyway because He is love. Who amongst you thought from the title that this was a blog about God getting all up in your business and that caused some dread inside of you because you don’t want God getting personal with you because you deserve a God-led beat down? Wrong! God desires to get personal with you because He is love and you are worthy of that love. Shame is triggering that dread inside of you. Shame lies. Shame prompts us to toss away the good gifts we are given. And this is also true, God is with you in your shame. (Hebrews 12:2, 1 John 2:28.) You can’t get away from this pursuing love no matter how far your shame tries to hide you from God’s gaze at you. But this is not what this blog is about. It is about how God is so personal in His pursuit of us. For me, I can point back to many events, […]
We are in year 2 of a seven year prison sentence with one of our sons. In year 2 we are seeing an increasingly amount of growth in him! We’ve been through prison sentences with him before but never one this long. But this is what happens when he chose to self-sabotage his life instead of dealing with the shame that has been the voice in his head most of his life. And the secrets that were strangling him. This 7-year sentence from his self-sabotage has cost him quite a bit plus he’s not a young thing anymore to bounce right back into his life. This is his story to share. As he is putting words to the shame and the secrets he is beginning to put truth into his life. He has started to share some peeks of that with John and I, the parents who took him in at age 12. And he has given me permission to share it with you all. Because this is the beginning of how you live a real brave life. At an early age I wondered why I felt so uncomfortable in situations when everyone else seemed so comfortable. Why was everything […]
Sometimes the hard things in life bring nothing but ruin. Sometimes burnout leads to depression. Sometimes injustice leads to violence. Sometimes brokenness leads to self-hatred. Sometimes doubt leads to a loss of faith. Sometimes death removes all hope. There are hard things and there are harder things. The good news (although it may not sound that way) is that every once in a while we get a little space, a little quiet, a little distance from the suffering. Sometimes a friend comes by the house. Sometimes Jesus writes in the sand and distracts us from the shame. Sometimes the hermit thrush sings outside our window and we sense a moment. A moment when we are no longer enmeshed in what ails us. A moment of freedom. A moment when we get to choose. Even when we are cornered by terrible pain, still, sometimes freedom rises up in us and we get to choose. We get to choose whether our helplessness draws us toward or away from prayer. We get to choose whether our grief deepens our empathy or sours us into resentment. We get to choose whether to allow the difficulties we have suffered to break or expand us. And […]
There are so many blogs here on Bravester about having a broken heart. I should have named this the Broken Hearts Club. Who knew that part of living a brave life is walking into the vulnerability that allows your heart to get broken? That that is the brave thing. Even more importantly that heartache is a signal to you that you’ve stumbled upon something or someone that makes your heart beat. That this is who you are. A broken heart is always a beginning. A broken heart is always a beginning. Click To Tweet How beautifully true but you still identify yourself as The One Who Was Dumped. This is a beginning you never wanted. And for many real reasons you are stuck and unable to move on with your life. It’s like being The One Who Was Dumped is now your identity. Even seven years later. Ahem. You are more than The One Who Was Dumped so I’m glad you found this blog. It is time to change your identity. You are loveable. You are desirable. You are worthy of a good match. God has you and your future is in His care. It is not too late. You […]
Big fat truth in that captured photo. Pain is the beginning. And time is a necessity. Ugh. I want this over now!!!! Day by day the Lord takes care of the innocent, and they will receive a reward that lasts forever. They will survive through the hard times; even in famine they will have more than enough. Psalm 37:18-19. Day by day = time. God is faithful to deliver us. The Bible is full of this promise. I’ve got a faith of 38 years that proves this promise. Which is why I also know this: time is involved. Time takes time and can’t be done now. Ugh truth. Continue reading more of Psalm 37. Be still in the presence of the Lord, and wait patiently for Him to act. Psalm 37:7a. Ugh. Don’t be impatient for the Lord to act! Travel steadily along His path. Psalm 37:34a. But I am impatient. The waiting takes bravery because waiting also requires vulnerability. Which is why we hate it so. We would rather scramble to fill the discomfort of this vulnerability than to fill the gap with trust. Then move to Psalm 38. You know what I long for, Lord; You hear my every […]
When I was called into full-time ministry I was given a gift. I had a growing heart for ministry, though I hadn’t acknowledged that yet. I was just happily busy serving at my church while living my life with a job, a cute house I was renting, and a steady beau. (Ah…the simple days, the favorite days of my life.) Just before I turned 20 I was at a retreat and during a prayer time I received a specific vision which was the call on my life. I remember it well—still. It messed up my soul and three months later I left my simple life and started my college education going to the college the vision directed me to go to. It was that specific. This is why I consider it a gift. The specifics of this vision has kept me directed and moving fiercely forward. Especially when I had college professors tell me that I was not called into full-time ministry. Especially when I lost love relationships because of this call. This vision was so real that it has kept me in the ministry now nearly 36 years. I followed the steps and was not surprised at all in […]
Dear beautiful girl, Your beauty hasn’t changed. Though I know that you feel that it has because you are no longer loved like you thought you were beautiful. I know. You are still beautiful. I know there are no words to describe the amount of pain you are in right now. I hope my words help…some. Nothing in your shattered world makes sense anymore because you don’t even know what happened. Was it something you said or did? Did you ruin everything? Why did things have to get so bad? Why can’t you just stop thinking about him? Why does it hurt so much every day? Every morning? I know how terribly painful it must be to wake up in the morning thinking of the one person you love, knowing that they may never think of you the same way. I know how much it hurts to wake up with the realization that you will never be his first choice. It is so painful to see him enthusiastically talk to every other girl knowing that you will never be that girl again. Everyone wants to help you heal. Your friends give you those looks of concern and they try to […]
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.