I DID IT!!!
One cloudy day with rain sprinkling onto my bright pink hat, I did it. A mile and a half hike in the Smoky Mountains taught me that brave faith is only one more step away. It is reaching a goal when you believe you can’t possibly conquer it by yourself. Increased stamina when you need it most, infused strength in legs that are ready to give out and an unwavering focus brought me to the end of the trail and breathtaking beauty.
I spent a few days in the Smoky Mountains before traveling to see my nephew graduate from high school. This time of retreat was self-imposed and oh so needed. I find restoration and renewal in these mountains and know God created this beauty to soak in whether alone or with others.
When I chose this trail, I had no idea what to expect. Immediately the path turned from hard-packed mud to terrain covered with deep tree roots weaving back and forth in intricate patterns. Boulders scattered here and there tried to block hikers from proceeding without success. As the trail climbed steadily upward, heavy rains from the previous days covered parts of the path. Streams formed and footing became tricky as I jumped from rock to rock. Let me set the record straight and assure you this is out of my comfort zone. I love to travel, but enjoy the company of others. This week God called me to spend time with Him. I needed to carve out time to let go of all that had been cluttering my mind, heart and soul.
Who knew that one trail in the mountains would teach me more about brave faith. I continue to learn brave faith is ordinary. It is trusting when you fear taking one more step. A faith like this grows exponentially each time you reach out to God to help you in the journey. On my own, I lack the courage and wisdom to reach the end of the trail. With God, I might still trip along the way, but He provides what is needed for each step.
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As i stepped gingerly along the path on the way down, God showed me beauty beyond words. He caught my attention in the rich greens of leaves, moss and ferns. Each time I rounded a corner, a new delight appeared ready for an “ooh and aah”! Each step down the mountain rhythmically beat out praise and thanksgiving. I also assured the people still making their way up to the top that the view and beauty was worth every step.
Before I left, my kids enthusiastically told me to enjoy myself. My sweet group of Monday night ladies warned me not to hike by myself. There was also something about bears mixed into that conversation. I began to question why walking out on my own was the best decision. Each opinion caused me to pause, but the result ended in these lessons.
Stepping out of your comfort zone leads you straight into the arms of Jesus.
Persevering, when one more step seems impossible, allows you to overcome insecurity and rely on God’s stability.
Thinking you can’t turns into believing you can when you rely on God’s strength.
Becoming secure in who you are provides an opening for brave faith to lead you on unfamiliar paths.
God promises to never leave or forsake us. Whether we are venturing out on a new trail or doing something ordinary like washing dishes, He is always there. That is the epitome of brave faith.
Where in your life do you experience brave faith? How have you stepped out of your comfort zone recently? Did you experience God in the process?
Sabbath blessings dear friends!
For more information on brave faith and perseverance, click here.
To dive deeper into your own brave faith journey, click below for my 31 Day Devotional.