We are all called to live bravely in this world of diverse Creation that God has breathed into being…to have courage for and with our neighbors…to foster kindness, understanding, compassion, and hope…to nurture grace…to wonder at the boldness and fragility of love…and to live out peace on this earth.
For the time of God is now, the new movement of God’s Spirit is closer than your very skin. Change your heart, mind, and life – turn around – and believe that this restoration and transformation is possible because it is good news. — Mark 1:15
Jesus returns from the wilderness…from this time of transition from his former life to the beginning of ministry…and this is the first thing he says after returning from his temptations in the wilderness…from this liminal space of uncomfortable and disorienting transition where all of us must go in order to become more mature individuals…Jesus says first that we must turn around…he says be changed…but do not fear…because the time is now, God is here with you…and that is very good news…so be bold and be brave.
We must live bravely to turn around, to change our entire way of living and perceiving the world. We must have courage to do this. We must live a courageous life of risk and vulnerability to do this…just as Christ did so, so we must follow his example…
Dr. Brene Brown offers us some additional validation for this bravery through her academic research. She has spent many years researching vulnerability, compassion, humility, trust, and bravery, and she says that all of her research leads towards some common conclusions that are shared by all religious traditions.
1. People are hard to hate close up. Move in.
2. Speak truth to power. Be civil.
3. Hold hands. With strangers.
4. Strong back. Soft front. Wild heart.
If you want to trust and to change and to grow/mature spiritually, emotionally, and mentally, then you have to practice the skills necessary to do so…BRAVING…
Boundaries – respect boundaries
Reliability – do what you say you’ll do
Accountability – own your mistakes, apologize, and make amends
Vault – don’t share information or experiences that re not yours to share
Integrity – choose courage over comfort; choose what is right over what is fun, fast, or easy; always practice your values rather than simply professing them
Nonjudgment – we can talk about how we feel without judgment
Generosity – extend the most generous interpretation possible to the intentions, words, and actions of others