I love this year’s theme, “Be You, Bravely”. I don’t have to think long and hard to come up with areas in my life that I want or need to challenge myself to be brave in.
Have you noticed that the theme is not simply called, “Be Brave”? It’s not called, “Be a Super Mum, Bravely”. It’s not even called, “Be like Lexia, Bravely”. Nope. It’s called, “Be YOU, Bravely”.
That little word in the middle, YOU, immediately brings a question to mind. Who are YOU?
When I hear that question I immediately cringe. I hate that question! Seriously, how do you answer when someone asks you who you are. “I’m Donna”. That only tells you my name. “I’m a wife and mother”. These are merely roles, shared by millions of women the around the world. Yet, if I am to be ME, bravely, then perhaps I need to consider who I am.
Assuming you share my dislike of that question, I’d like to suggest a different approach to it. Think for a moment about a child’s jigsaw puzzle: it’s made up of lots of different pieces. If you look at a stack of jigsaw pieces, you won’t immediately know what the big picture is. Each little piece is important, but it is only as you connect and join them together the picture of the jigsaw appears.
So, instead of trying to simply answer the big question, “Who are You”, let’s ask a number of smaller, easier to answer, questions, that will help paint the picture of who you are. For example,
What do you love?
What do you hate/dislike?
What do you feel passionate/strongly about?
What are you good at?
What are you not-so-good at?
These questions help to paint a picture of ourselves, and also help us know areas we can be brave in. For me, I dislike conflict. I’d rather avoid tough conversations – this is a definite area for me to be brave in. I’m not good at thinking on the spot, and this makes me indecisive at time. I can be braver about trusting God and stepping out in faith rather than wavering and second-guessing myself.
What an opportunity we have this year – an opportunity to grow together, to face our fears, and to be brave and courageous! An opportunity to dream big, to step out in faith, to try new things.
I was challenged recently by the question, “what’s the biggest thing you’ve prayed for?” Hmmm …. even my prayers are safe most of the time. This year I want to pray BIG prayers to a BIG God who is able to do exceedingly more than we can ask or imagine. (Eph 3:20)
What’s YOUR brave challenge this year?
Our graphic this year is a feather. Without feathers a bird couldn’t fly, and if it didn’t fly it wouldn’t be all it was created to be. That first flight for a bird takes bravery – and often a little nudge from the mummy-bird. Feathers remind us of bravery, they remind us to step out of the comfort of the nest so we can experience the exhilaration of flying.
Let’s encourage each other! Point out to others the strengths you see in them and the gifts God has placed in their life. Encourage them to take reasonable risks. Let’s to do this hand in hand with each other, carefully nudging each other out of the nest, cheering and screaming the top of our voices as we watch our fellow mums and leaders take flight and fly!
Field Staff Manager