Friday, December 2, 2011

Keeping Courage Close

Be strong and let your heart take courage, all you who hope in the LORD.  (NASB  31:24).

The thermometer read 22 degrees Fahrenheit, outside -- a chilly morning, indeed, for a run.

I bundled up from head to toe and decided to take the dog.  Maybe the distraction would help me to get through the run. I was only going to go a short 3 miles, so he could handle it.

Of course, he handled it well, and I fought him the whole way.

He’s not used to running with me.

We need to work on this, I thought, as he continually tried to pull on me, stretching my left arm out like Elasta-girl.

“Courage! (that’s his name) Stay!” I said with my firm mother voice.

And, over and over again, I said it -- “Courage!  Stay!”

I thought back to several years ago when I was working on teaching the dog to heel – a time when I was in need of major healing. I even wrote a post about it (click here).  Apparently, he and I had not made much progress.

This time, though, instead of thinking of healing, I was thinking of courage.

It’s true, isn’t it?  We are in a constant need of keeping courage close.

The analogy of the dog and my run with him falls apart here. 

Truth is, unlike the dog, courage doesn’t keep trying to get away from me.  I keep on wandering from it.

I need to keep courage close. 

I need it for the mundane and for the massive moments of life.
I need it to slow down.
I need it to get up and move.
I need it to teach, to mother, to be a wise wife, to be a compassionate friend, and to look for the opportunities that God brings a cross my path for today.
I need it to wait.
I need it to fight.
I need it to let go.
I need it to hold on.
I need it to believe that His promises are true.
I need it to be sure that what He has planned for me is good.

God gives us courage and He gives us strength to grab hold of it. When we walk with Him, He is faithful to give it. We can be fearless with Him. 

I need courage and I need to keep it close.

One more thing … this is what I noticed about this perky hound.  On the way home, when we got close to our neighborhood,  he picked up the pace, and pulled me right along with him.  It’s like he knew that we were almost there, and he was going to sprint to the finish.

And I wondered, “As we near Home, will we need more courage? Will God give us more courage to help to pull us on?”

I suspect that we will need more and  I’m asking the Lord to please assure me that He will give it, and that it will help to bring me Home.

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