This is my verse this week – my focus – my lesson from God to embrace and wear as His daughter. I am on a journey and each step is teaching me what it means to be brave, self-confident and strong to say “yes” to God’s plan. It is a journey that continues and will not end here because being brave is a lifelong goal for me as I walk through my weakness and doubt.
We are following a journey in my church called “Brave” with a map to mark our way. A map that outlines the path that we should follow, but with any map there are detours and barriers and messages that seem to pull us in a different direction. Stepping forward into brave is saying “yes” to God. Each step takes us closer to His embrace.
[Tweet “Say “yes” to God, step forward into brave and leave your fears behind.”]
The story of Peter stepping out of the boat in Matthew 14 starting with verse 22 is the foundation of our church’s study. The story begins with this ghostlike figure walking toward Peter and the disciples out on the water. Peter questions Jesus and says “if it’s really you, tell me to come to you, walking on the water”. Jesus assured them that it was He and beckoned Peter to come to Him in the middle of the water – in the middle of a storm. Peter looked Jesus in the eyes and took that brave step out of the boat. As long as Peter kept his eyes on Jesus, he was fine but as soon as he looked at the swirling water, he began to sink.
What a great lesson for all of us. Keeping our eyes, our faith focused squarely on Jesus keeps us afloat and on the path toward Him. As soon as the world pulls our vision away from Jesus we start to sink as fear creeps in and threatens to consume until we re-focus again.
We were never meant to finish this journey to brave by ourselves. We were always meant to walk this out with Jesus by our sides.
Reminders for this week:
- Step out of the boat-that’s right, take the first step and look Jesus squarely in the eyes
- Brave is meant to be done with others and was never meant to be an “I can do this by myself venture”
- When fear and doubt fill your mind with “you are not good enough”, kick it to the curb with God’s Word- see 1 Timothy 1:7 above
- Surrender all to God – the self-doubt, fear, weakness, messy, etc. even if it means that you fall along the way. Surrender again and again because God is ready with grace and love every time.
What is your brave step right now and what is your go to verse that keeps you focused on Jesus?
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Let’s be brave. Let’s step out. If Jesus has his eye on us we are safe. Your words count big. We are often so afraid. Thank you for this word that we should keep focused. So very important! Cheering you on from the #RaRalinkup on Purposeful Faith.
Thank you friend! Jesus doesn’t ask much of us but when He does I want to be the person to bravely say “yes” as I step out of the boat of comfort. You are role model for me as you bravely write each week and honor God with your words. I am cheering you on just as you are doing for me. Blessings!
Dear Mary, thank you for sharing this beautiful post.
Fear is a burden we must not allow to hold us back. Fear intimidates us if we allow it. And there is no room for us to fear as long as we hold on to God’s promises.
Thanks for sharing this lovely article.
I had to come by and read through again. Funny isn’t it?
Many Blessings to you
Praying we all hold onto God’s promises today and everyday as we step out bravely for Him. Have a blessed weekend!
OMG! I wrote something similar couple of years ago! Amazing how our faith journey goes, right?
Keep the faith!
It is amazing how faith journeys of others can parallel each other. I imagine you have learned so much about brave in the last few years. Thank you for being here!
I remember thinking as the new year approached that maybe my word for the year would be Brave. And while God revealed a different word as I read your post I thought of how brave is very much a theme for me this year. Brave to keep trusting where He leads me even when I didn’t fully understand why. Brave to leave certain things behind and Brave to saying yes to new things.
And being brave only came by keeping my eyes set on Him.
Great encouragement, friend.
Brave seems to be a very comprehensive word but through the journey I believe that there are so many layers that contribute and lead us toward brave. I would love to hear what your word is and all of your stories of brave this year. Love and hugs!!!
I never came up with a “word” for this year, Mary, but slowly over the past months God keeps bringing one up for me “divert.” And this passage and your thoughts remind me of that reality. Every day I must divert my focus from those things that scream for my attention to looking deeply and unswervingly at my Savior. He doesn’t “scream” for attention, but rather calms my fears (and “screams” ha!), bringing me the peace I need in the storm. Inspiring post, my friend!
I like the word divert as a way to lose the worldly pull and gain God’s attention by focusing on Him. I am learning so much through the Brave journey at my church. So much to let go of and so much to lean into and move toward in my life. Love your encouragement and you friend! Thank you for being here and I don’t think that God screams at you or anyone! 🙂
I am excited about this scripture.
Fear is a bondage and a wall that gets higher every time we believe it is real.
I had shared about it in my book too.
You are so right! Fear is a bondage and I love the comparison to a wall getting taller every time we feed into it. Thank you as always for being here! You are a blessing!
This is a very timely post for me as I have made up my mind to face my fears and go after the dreams God has put on my heart.
I am saying “Yes God” even in the storm!
I love how this post connected with you. God has a way of speaking directly into our hearts with the words or encouragement we need at that moment. I will be praying for you that you are able to keep your eyes on God as you face your storms. Blessings!
Boy, I needed that reminder–that brave was never meant to happen alone. I know that Jesus is with me in my journey to brave–but I often forget that he puts other people around me to help me achieve bravery. I forget about the body and think I can do it all.
I found the reminder of brave being done with others, to be very insightful and a great reminder for all of us that life is meant to be done in community. Next time we step out of the boat we need to remember that Jesus is right there ready to help. Hope the rest of your week is blessed.
I love your focus verse this week. That we are not given a spirit of fear. He is always with us, and we draw strength as we draw close to Him. The example of Peter is a wonderful one. When we focus on Jesus, we are able to walk into all that He calls us to do. When we become distracted by our circumstances – the storms and dark waves in our lives, we begin to sink. Thanks for the reminder.
So glad you are here today, Kamea! I love my church’s study but find the image of Peter stepping out of the boat to walk to Jesus a powerful one. Blessed by your encouragment! Have a great rest of your week!
Hi Mary! I have found out through exercise and my PT sessions that having a point of reference to stare at when balancing really helps. If my focus shifts, my body wobbles! Just like Peter, I need to gaze on the Lord in all things. That way, I’ll be able to walk the road that Jesus has paved for me.
Sounds like a powerful series!
The brave series at my church feels like it was written for me at this pivotal time in my life. Balance is everything and all of it requires focus-eyes set squarely on Jesus. I love when you join me here. Praying that physical therapy is going well and progressing as it should. Hope the rest of your week is wonderful!
What an encouraging message- and wonderful study you are doing with your church. Thank you for inspiring me to remember to keep my focus on Christ and for this call to surrender: “Surrender all to God – the self-doubt, fear, weakness, messy, etc. even if it means that you fall along the way. Surrender again and again because God is ready with grace and love every time.” Amen! Thanks for sharing!
So glad you stopped over Karen! Our church wide study is amazing. Moat of the time I feel like I have no words with how powerful the messages are and how this will make a difference in my future. God is so faithful in our yeses and cannot wait to walk the path with us as we rely on Him to be brave. Hope you have a blessed week!
This is such a great post! I love the prompts for the week you conclude with, Mary. Being brave can be scary sometimes, but what a joy to know that our Heavenly Father will be right there with us each step of the way. Thank you for this beautiful reminder!
So glad you joined me here today. I am encouraged by your sweet comment and love seeing new faces. Praying that we all look Jesus square in the eyes and say “yes’ when He says now it’s time. Have a blessed week!
Hi Mary! Brave is such a courageous sounding word but sometimes scary. If we would always remember that God is with us and that we have friends along the way to walk with us, I think we would have less times of doubt. But the more we surrender to Him, even if we fall a lot, as you said, He is always waiting with open arms to lift us up and put us back on the right path. My brave step is that I want to publish a nature photography haiku book for children. I started it last year and have just not gone forward. I need to remind myself of the verse I chose years ago as my life verse. “I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.” Phil 4:13
Brave is a strong word and it is easy to think that it does not fit us when it really does. Saying yes is half the battle of being brave. Thank you for sharing your brave step of writing a haiku book for children with photography. I will be praying for your brave to become a yes and you finish this project. I am sure it will be beautiful. I also love the verse you chose. That is one I go back to over and over. Have a blessed week.
Great reminder that we can do nothing without Jesus at our side. We must remember to keep our focus on him. Regardless He is always with us!
Thank you Emily! Praying we all keep our eyes focused on Jesus our Savior. Have a blessed week!
I keep full hope that every Christ follower would come to a point where stepping out on faith was just easy. Maybe it is dependent on how much we have been through as to how easy it is. I know it didn’t get easy for me until I went through some very hard things. Not that hard things have stopped, but the fear has and that makes all the difference. Now, if only knowing where those steps lead every time was easy. 😉
Blessings to you, Mary, as you journey into this new phase of your life. Choose to step out and follow each time and brave will just follow suit.
You are such an encourager and I love that about you. Following God will never be easy buy I pray my brave yeses become easier. Thank you for being here and cheering me on. Blessings!