What are you like when you face trials? Are you like Eeyore on Winnie-the-Pooh and respond with depression or isolation? Or maybe you are the opposite and try to pretend that everything is all right even when it’s not. Is everything puppies and unicorns? Are you more prone to rise up and stand strong in courage or coward back in defeat?
Courage is a word of strength. The kind of strength that Paul the apostle spoke about in the Bible in 1 Corinthians 13:13: “Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.” Think about that for a moment, to live cowering in any circumstance is to live the opposite of the strength and courage Paul speaks of. Instead of living in the courage of faith, you cower in fear. Rather than living in the courage of hope, you cower from the trials and circumstances of this life with despair. While love is courage, hatred is cowardice.
To live out the God-given potential that is within you, the attitude of Courageous Joy, is a necessity. The good news is that Courageous Joy is not something you do by pulling yourself up by the bootstraps. You are not alone. God has given you the power through His Spirit, living in you, to live out Courageous Joy. He want you to stand in strength to run the race of life and finish well. You are empowered!
There are 3 fundamentals to this Game Changer called Courageous Joy:
1. Develop Endurance
“We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance.” (Romans 5:3) It’s not that you go around looking for problems and trials, but as long as you are living this life they will find you. It’s more that you stand strong with Courageous Joy in and through all things. And God will use them, as you allow Him, to develop endurance in your character. That is so important.
2. Hold on To Hope
Look at what Paul says next, “Endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation.”(Romans 5:4) Endurance is a necessary element for a healthy character. Within character is confident hope. Often the word hope is used as wishful thinking. Confident hope is so much more than that. Confident hope is an assurance that no matter what the circumstances around you look like you are able to face them with Courageous Joy because of the fact that you know “God’s got this.”
3. Rely On God’s Strength
The problem with trying to live in my own strength is I eventually end up on empty, drifting from one moment of cowering to another. But God’s strength will never run out. Relying on His power, through Courageous Joy, will cause every pain and struggle to lead to personal growth, insight, depth of living and dependency on Him.
Make it a prayer today that God would help you to live in the Courageous Joy that He has for you and that Jesus led the way in. His desire for you is one of Courage!
P.S. Check out this Life Transformation Daily Reading and Daily Study to change the way you think about Courageous Joy: Courage In Trials.