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The Beauty of Courage and How to Cultivate It

March 7, 2020
On Saturdays we talk about Inner beauty

Happy weekend, sweet gal! Welcome to Dressed for My Day where every Saturday we turn our conversation to inner beauty. Today I thought we’d chat a little about the beauty of courage, what it looks like and how we can cultivate a little in our own lives.

Who can find a virtuous woman? For her price is far above rubies.”

~ Proverbs 31:10

That question posed in Proverbs 31:10 has intimidated many a woman, me included. But maybe that’s because we’ve misunderstood the definition of a “virtuous woman.” That word “virtuous” in fact implies more than purity or goodness. It’s the same word used to describe a soldier of valor, one who bravely goes into battle to fight for those he loves and what he believes in.

So the “virtuous woman” introduced in Proverbs 31 is indeed a woman of valor, strength and, yes, courage. And really, with that in mind, if you read the rest of the description of this Proverbs 31 woman, she is one who faces life with a mighty dose of strength and courage.

Being a Woman Require Courage

Truly, I’ve found that it takes a large dose of courage to be a woman. Wouldn’t you agree?

It takes courage to:

  • earn an education
  • apply for a job
  • say, “I do”
  • carry an unborn child
  • birth a baby
  • raise a child
  • pay the bills

Yes, we have to be braver than we really are to meet the bare minimal requirements for the lives most of us live. But you and I know that none of us live “bare minimal” kinds of lives.

We need even more courage to:

  • say goodbye to a stillborn child
  • nurse a husband through illness
  • raise a child with special needs
  • live as a single woman in a couples’ world
  • care for a parent with dementia
  • bury a child
  • love a difficult family member
  • persevere in a strained marriage
  • forgive a wayward spouse
  • recover from an injury
  • rebound from a divorce
  • battle cancer
  • endure multiple deployments
  • move across the country
  • love a child through mental illness
  • confront a boss who is demanding inappropriate things
  • blow the whistle on a perpetrator
  • live with an autoimmune disease
  • walk away from a dream to deal with a reality

And the truth is, there have been times in each of our lives when we didn’t exercise as much courage as we would have liked to. Right? Yeah, there have been days when I felt more like a weenie than a woman of valor.

So how do we cultivate courage?

True courage comes from putting our trust in the Lord. When we know our God, truly know His character, then we become courageous, fearless, mighty.

But the people who know their God will act valiantly.”

~ Daniel 11:32a

Daniel is told in the midst of prophecy that there will come a day when many will succumb to the wiles of the enemy and relent in the face of hard times. But then he’s assured that those who know their God – truly know His character and trust in it – will be able to stand courageously, press on and persevere. While this prophecy relates to a specific moment in time, it also provides us with a time-tested principle:

Those who know and rely on God’s character are able to valiantly press on through life’s hardships.

Do you need courage today?

Maybe you’re facing a battle that feels daunting and unrelenting today. Maybe you’re weary from a personal struggle or feeling the fatigue of helping those you love fight their demons. Are you wondering if you’ll have the courage to press on?

I get it. Some days are hard and some seasons seem never to end. And while others may think we are brave and strong, we often feel like little girls doing women’s work.

But I assure you that if you will get to know your God – really get to know Him…through His Word, through prayer and through thinking on His ways – He will indeed fill you with an uncanny courage that causes unthinkable valor to rise up in you.

You, dear gal, are a mighty warrior. You are a woman who has already fought more than your share of battles and overcome. You have loved well and fought hard and prayed long and stayed the course, and you can do it again. Not because you are all that, but because He is. And He’s got you.

Be strong and courageous. For the battle is the Lord’s.

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

~ Joshua 1:9

Do you have thoughts you’d like to share about today’s topic? I’d love to hear from you today! I tend to take as much time off from work as I can during the weekends, so I may not reply to your comments unless you ask me a direct question. But I’d love for you to carry on this conversation in the comment section below. And you can know for certain that I read and value each and every comment. Please remember that I try to keep this space free from controversy, so let’s stay away from the topic of politics or other divisive issues.

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xoxo, Kay
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7 thoughts on “The Beauty of Courage and How to Cultivate It

  1. Thank you, Kay. You helped me to think of Proverbs 31 in a different light. So often I have focused on the virtue and purity and industry described in this Proverb. To think on the application of virtuous as bravery and strength is a blessing. I do not possess great strength or valor but I have Jesus in my heart and He never fails to lend me His courage.
    Have a wonderful weekend!
    God bless you always,

  2. I felt the same way. I misunderstood Proverb 31. I’m about to go on a journey to change my body and habits. It will take great work and discipline. I fear I don’t have the courage to go through with it. I feel weak inside
    But I’m unhealthy and unhappy. I must do this for me. I need to pray more for guidance.

  3. My dear Kay,

    Once again your insight is penetrating and your encouragement from the Word hits the mark. I’ve never thought of the everyday elements of a woman’s life as requiring courage. Instead, because certain life decisions and circumstances are so common, I figured they must be rather straightforward. I see with new depth that’s not the case. Always I’ve acknowledged to myself and others that the hard providences in life require courage and valor, and now I understand more clearly that courage from the Lord manifests in our lives according to the grace we need from Him. The examples you list are powerful and remind me of how far the Lord has brought me. True friends who will walk with us and encourage us (share courage with us, I think) and for whom we can do the same, are so hard to find and so worth the search.
    Thank YOU for being a woman of courage. I have do doubt the Lord has gifted you in this way.

  4. What a fresh way to look at those scriptures! I never would have put all that together. Several items on those lists apply to me. Thank you for making me feel brave rather than tire an courageous rather than worn out.

  5. An excellent post! It touch my heart!!!You have written this post as you know me personally and that makes it super special to me!!
    I have gone through so many health issues as an infant,young adult in my twenties and as an older adult!! I know without my family’s support and God I would be here today!! I have always had faith in God and have always been positive!! Thanks for reminding us we are strong and courageous because of God!
    You are an awesome,amazing,loving and caring woman!! Many wonderful blessings to you today and forever!!!??⭐️?