April 15, 2016
A Chain of Courage
“The midwives, however, feared God and did not do what the king of Egypt had told them to do; they let the boys live.” Exodus 1:17 (NIV)
Each day I started my workday by telling myself, You can do this! It’s not a big deal. For many people the task I needed to complete was simple — something they could accomplish in a few short minutes. But it wasn’t for me.
Even though this simple act would help others in their walk with Jesus, that motivation wasn’t enough to push me through. The fear of failure crippled me. I finally found the courage I needed to push past my phobia when a story leapt off the page and into my heart.
The first two chapters of the book of Exodus tell the tale of a chain of courage — one act of fearlessness prompting another until the whole of these women’s actions changed history.
Act 1: Shiphrah and Puah, midwives in Egypt, are commanded by Pharaoh to kill all males as soon as they are born. Exodus 1:17 tells us, "The midwives, however, feared God and did not do what the king of Egypt had told them to do; they let the boys live."
What bravery these women showed in obeying God rather than Pharaoh!
Act 2: Jochebed, the mother of Moses, courageously decides she will not obey Pharaoh, either. Rather than kill her son, she hides him at home. When she can no longer keep his existence a secret, she puts this one she loves in a basket, hiding him in the Nile River.
Jochebed’s faith to take the risk of hiding a baby and putting him in a river is compelling!
Act 3: Miriam, Moses’ sister, stands by, watching the basket boat. But she isn't just observing. When Pharaoh's daughter calls for the basket to be brought to her, this grit of a girl steps up and addresses the princess, giving royalty advice on how the child can be taken care of.
Do you see the chain effect one woman's courage had on another's?
Shiphrah and Puah decided to go against Pharaoh together.
Jochebed, in the same steps of the midwives, chose courage instead of compromise.
I have no doubt that Jochebed inspired her daughter to show her prowess to the princess.
I want to be a part of a chain effect of courageousness, too!
As a young mother, my mom stepped out of her social norm, embraced Jesus as her Savior and became a prayer warrior for her eight children. Even though several were already adults when she came to know Christ, through her prayers and life testimony, all of us serve Him today.
Seeing my mother’s fearless faith gives me courage to make a difference in my world. Seeing God answer her prayers for her children empowers me to pray for my children’s salvation, asking God that they will follow the steps of Miriam — on the lookout for where God can use them — and when the time is right, boldly step up with the wisdom God gives them.
Friend, where are you in a chain of courage?
Is God calling you to be the first in your family to break out? To step up and bravely make decisions to bring God’s redemption to your family line? To redefine “normal” in your family's legacy?
Maybe like me, you are blessed to have witnessed the courage of another, and it’s empowered you to be brave. We have to be careful not to grow comfortable or complacent when we're in the middle of the chain but instead be empowered by the Holy Spirit to keep courage going.
We can start by:
- Praying for courage.
- Surrounding ourselves with others who are courageous.
- Reading stories of others who’ve been courageous in the Bible or in books.
Let's be brave. Let's display daring boldness and in turn, teach others to be courageous.
Lord, help us to choose courage over fear. We need the Holy Spirit to empower us to lean on You and take the steps You call us to take. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Deuteronomy 31:6, “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.” (NIV)
2 Timothy 1:7, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” (NKJV)
Is your fear pushing you away from God rather than drawing you closer to Him? Uproot fear and anxiety from your mind using the Proverbs 31 Ministries’ 30-Day Devotional: Overcoming Fear. Click here to get your copy today for a gift of any amount.
Stop by Lynn Cowell’s blog today where she is sharing more on the power of change that happens when we are courageous. She is also giving away a beautiful print to remind you of faith in your home!
Be a part of passing on courage to the next generation. Magnetic: Becoming the Girl He Wants empowers young women to bravely shift their focus from external to internal beauty.
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
How can we teach the next generation to be brave?
Let's spur each other on today. Share today’s devotion with a friend or family member, asking them to join you in a chain of courage.
© 2016 by Lynn Cowell. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
630 Team Rd., Suite 100
Matthews, NC 28105
Originally published Friday, 15 April 2016.