BRAVE: My word for 2016

As I look back at how fast  2016 went, I can’t believe its over.  2016 was the year I became a mother. One of the bravest moments of my life to date. Sure I’d taken risks before, but not like this. And I knew it was going to change the way I saw the world.

Earlier this year I read a Shauna Niequist devotional about prayer in her book Savor. It was about how she prayed for her children to live through the night. To pray for nights when they are well and you’re not, or the nights when they are sick and you can’t do anything about it. I’d never prayed like that before those nights came into my world, the simplicity of it: Praying she wakes up and lives loved another day.

Sometimes you chose to be brave, and sometimes it is chosen for you. Was it a different type of  bravery, than what you feel when you jump off a cliff or skydive? How does that compare to a daily grind of parenting bravery I had been feeling?

I remember how nervous I was, scared that I was going to mess it up. When I think about the responsibility that has been given, to specifically me, to be her mother, I usually wind up crying and overwhelmed with responsibility. My heart feels heavy from that burden, and opportunity. But I have to choose bravery. Daily. Otherwise I don’t know if I would make it.

I kept singing these lyrics over and over to myself as I changed her diaper. Or as I clothed her. Or just did our daily life.

You make me brave
You make me brave
You call me out beyond the shore into the waves
You make me brave
You make me brave
No fear can hinder now the love that made a way

You make me brave
You make me brave
You call me out beyond the shore into the waves
You make me brave
You make me brave
No fear can hinder now the promises you made – Bethel Music – You Make Me Brave

This word brave kept ringing loudly and clearly in my mind those first few months. It wasn’t that I was being ask to do some crazy thing. But a daily, surrender of selfishness and control, for love, peace, and grace.

To live loved and without fear and a lesser grip on my need for control.

I read in another blog, that bravery begets bravery. You have to be brave in order to experience more things that require to continue to build faith and trust.

What’s the other option? What’s the opposite of brave? Fear? Anxiety? As I think about these alternatives I don’t think I want to live in that daily. Especially while raising a daughter in this world. As I think about 2016, I don’t want to look back and remember that instead of being brave, I was the opposite.

So 2017, what will you bring? What will the word for my life this year?

Happy New Year! From my family to you and yours! We were #MadAboutPlaid for our party this year…!

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