Very few of us know or have had the privilege of meeting a knight in shining armor. A larger than life soul, who belly laughs in the face of danger, whose strength seems to grow with each successive trial as they tap into an endless wellspring of bravery and self assurance. The one warrior who can turn coal into a diamond, by utilizing, not fearing, the breath of the dragon!I so desperately want to be that brave knight. I want to have courage in the face of my fears! I don’t always want to whimper in pain and run the opposite direction. Or, I find just as effective, hopping into my bed, pulling the blankets over my head, and solemnly vowing that I will not leave until I’ve prayed all of my fear away!But maybe ‘brave’ doesn’t look the way I want it to…shiny, solid, stoic, unshakeable. Maybe ‘brave’ is not a once in a lifetime, knight in shining armor rescue mission, but an everyday occurrence, that is practised by all of us. When someone chooses to live; to love; to serve; to touch; to pray.
As I sit to write, I have so many pictures flashing through my mind of the ordinary but profound bravery that each one of us uses, clings to, during the difficult times in our lives. I begin to see a much clearer, more realistic picture taking shape than that of the knight in protective armor. I see each one of us, part of the same army, doing battle, being brave, in so many small but heroic ways.Brave is the one who, at a snails pace, continues their journey to the wardrobe that has been locked up and feared for so long. Brave is when they reach into the darkness of the wardrobe, knowing that they will meet the cobwebs of brokenness and the dirt of unworthiness that will try to cling. Brave is knowing and shakily accepting that they will never be free… be clean… until they put in the difficult, often painful work that it will take to clean out the wardrobe. Brave is taking away the wardrobes power to lock things up to rot.
Brave is choosing another path to tread than the one that we find ourselves on. Perhaps this new road is awkward and unfamiliar, but hints of a different journey that, in the end, will be less damaging; less draining; more simple; more profound.Brave is the husband who holds the hand of his wife, his best friend, when she fights for her life. Brave is the wife, who puts her hand in her man’s, and continues to pray for a miracle.Brave is holding your tongue in a situation when it would be easy to join in the gossip or NOT holding your tongue when you witness an injustice or just need to stand up for yourself, for once!
Brave is the quiet, but brilliant child, who raises her hand to answer the teacher’s difficult question, even though
she knows there are consequences to being ‘the smart one’.
Brave is the single mother who holds their child close for a time, but then allows them to find their own freedom, apart from her, knowing the pain of loss will be her child’s gain.
Brave is honouring a promise or vow, even when you don’t want to.
Brave is not letting your past failures define your present or your future success.
Brave is acknowledging your flaws and moving on in spite of them. Or perhaps reaching out because of them.
Many of your OWN stories may have cozied their way onto my bravery list and I thank you with a full heart, for being willing to share your stories with me. They bring me great comfort and inspiration, reminding me that though I am broken and ordinary, I am not alone!
Unfortunately, we will never rid ourselves of those who kick when their opponent is down, or those who choose to play the pharisee. However, we can choose to foster true strength and bravery by seeing our self in the face of another and making the choice, then and there, to embrace them with a wild, passionate, inexplicable grace.THAT, is being brave.
Becoming Ordinary: Day 102