What Does It Mean to Be Brave?

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Over the last 25 years I’ve had a lot of opportunities to be brave. Some I took. Some I didn’t.

Each time I knew that I was doing something difficult and that difficult thing required a response. Sometimes I did what seemed impossible. Sometimes I took the easy way out.

The word, brave, has rough beginnings. It can be considered that it came from the Latin word, bravus, meaning “cutthroat” or “villain” and that later it became what it is now.

“Ready to face and endure danger or pain” is a more applicable definition for the modern day but I would argue that in those moments where it felt I needed to be the most brave, I looked very much like a villain.

The Bible will tell us over and over again that GOD does not call us to an easy path. It stresses that things will look easy and seem to come naturally to the wicked and that the righteous will suffer. So we must be ready to face and endure danger and pain.

When I look at my life, the bravest things I did made me look foolish, weak, broken, and sometime even outright wrong at the moment.

In fact, the bravest thing I’ve ever done was make the choice to show people when I was foolish, weak, broken, and wrong. I made up my mind to share the honest truth about my experiences no matter how it made me look. It still is the hardest thing that I continue to choose to do.

So, let’s start. Let us begin to understand how to be brave by being honest.

There is a quote attributed to author Mary Anne Radmacher,

“Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I’ll try again tomorrow.”

We can be brave in the face of a world that would have us lie to make itself more comfortable. It isn’t always loud and terrifying to be brave. Sometimes, our courage just comes from answering honestly when someone asks, “How are you?”.

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