Some days you just gotta “have church.” It’s nice to go to church but having church whenever and however you want is…well, quite exciting! And phone church is even better because you can stay in your pj’s.
When I called my friend Debbie today, little did I know we we’re going to have church. Oh, we frequent spiritual discussions but this morning was different. All because of this one little video with a great big message.
Our common past has led us to weep over a million “if only’s.” BUT our common future leads us everyday to the feet of Jesus in gratitude for what He’s done FOR us and IN us.
Sometimes we get a little silly and start dreaming together. Frankly, it’s a little scary because we KNOW we won’t hesitate if we have to call one another out should one of us start any “stinkin’ thinkin.” And should one of us attempt to go back to a life of shame and striving, dear Jesus help us…one of us is going to the grave.
Before we hung up the phone this morning, one of us commented, “We just had church.” And we did. Big time! Love, mercy, truth, grace, joy and yes, splashes of sorrow and we’ve got revival people! ~ Kandace Rather
Flex Your Brave by Hosanna Poetry (The author gave permission to debbieutz.com to republish.)
Showing courage. Fearless. Bold. Audacious. Recklessly daring. Valiant. Lion-hearted.
And Grace is the greatest brave.
This doesn’t sound like me most days. In fact on any given day, sometimes I feel just barely saved.
I get up and life is a war, a battlefield of blazing swords, quickly swerving through the sultry air, nothing that comes my way seems fair.
And at the end of the day, the last thing I want to give is grace.
It would take everything out of me.
And I don’t have it in me.
These battles raging against me look like loved ones constantly hurting me.
Throwing words of hurt at me knowing what they do to me.
Like a sword of heartbreak constantly stabbing me.
These battles look like people holding against me things that I used to be.
Refusing to forgive me though I know I’ve said I’m sorry.
These battles look like people persistently trying to persuade me that I’m failing.
Consistently trying to tear down all that I’ve achieved.
One day they say this and one day they say that, I can’t tell anymore who’s being real with me.
These battles look like gossip.
These battles look like rumours.
These battles look like enemies and accusers.
But they also look like my family.
They look like my best friends.
They look like my church.
They look like the ones I love the most.
And this is why it hurts so much as this battle never seems to end.
And I get why they say that grace is the greatest brave because giving grace doesn’t come easily, it doesn’t feel natural, it is taking every gut and every muscle out of me to give it.
To show courage. To be fearless, bold, audacious, recklessly daring, valiant, lion-hearted.
Is it even possible to give it?
And Jesus proved it.
I remember what He did when I was the one warring against Him.
When I was the one throwing swords.
When I was the one living for myself and worshipping the world.
I used to do things to Him that people used to do to me.
I would tell Him I loved Him, promise things to Him and then I’d break those vows repeatedly.
I’d represent Him when I wanted and then turn my back if I felt it was warranted.
I took, and I took and I took from Him, and then I blamed Him if He didn’t give me the next thing I demanded.
I lied to Him, I cursed at Him, I made fun of Him and yet all His grace, He still gave it.
He was courageous enough to take it.
All our disgustingness and carry it onto a cross.
He died with it.
The ultimate form of bravery, He was it.
He gave us a second chance even though we didn’t deserve it.
For no matter how hurtful the world was being, He believed we were still worth it.
He says, My grace is sufficient, for you. For my strength it made perfect in weakness.
And that could not be more true.
I am weak. I am unworthy.
I don’t want to forgive and love anyone who has hurt me.
But His grace is enough for all of me.
And when I pass that grace on it is Him being made strong inside of me.
I can be brave because Jesus Christ was brave.
And I sure am glad that someone once thought to give me grace.
He takes our weak arms and gives them muscles far beyond us.
He takes our frail lives and makes heroes out of us.
He takes our dirt and makes a garden out of us.
And with all that He has given us, with how much He has equipped us, He says I geared you up and now you go and be courageous.
We don’t get the luxury of looking like Jesus and holding onto our hurts and our hate.
We don’t get to say that we follow Jesus and then hoard to ourselves what He so freely gave.
We don’t get to condemn the world that Jesus died to save.
He says, Come…be brave.
I did not come to save you of all your sins so you could just stay the same.
Grace restores broken families. Grace rebuilds shattered relationships. Grace changes mindsets.
But grace doesn’t just happen.
Someone has to be brave enough to give it.
So flex your brave.
Show courage. Be fearless. Bold. Audacious. Recklessly daring. Valiant. Lion-hearted.
And don’t let the world take your brave away.
Look to Jesus, the king of the courageous.
For at the battle of pain, evil and chaos, the weapon He fought with was grace.