Mamas are brave. Let’s admit it…it takes a whole lot of courage to take a newborn baby out of the safe hospital into a big, scary world. It takes courage to take the little, tiny being into a public place full of germs and people and touching and noise and newness. It takes courage to bring a toddler (or two…or three) to the grocery store with you–sometimes alone–and fill your entire grocery bill, knowing that at any moment they could turn into that scary, crazy stranger toddler that screams and hollers for unknown reasons! And you’re like who is this kid?!? They were just patting your face and cuddling in your lap, and now they’re mad because they’re not in the front of the buggy!
And teenagers? It just takes courage.
It takes courage to raise up your children in the fear and admonition of the Lord in a society where “that type of raising” is becoming unpopular.
Sometimes we don’t even recognize the courage that our Maker has placed within us, mamas. But it’s there, tucked away, ready for when we need it.
One of the biggest fears for mamas is to be out of commission for some reason. We feel like we can’t get sick. We can’t take a day off. We must be available for our children, our husbands, our family. But sometimes God calls us to a journey that makes us relinquish our “glue” that we feel is holding our family together.
And letting go of that mama-glue takes a whole lot of courage!
My friend Jill is a very brave mama. She has traveled a journey that involved a Multiple Sclerosis diagnosis when she was a young mama of two preschoolers. Guess what Jill said when I asked her to write about being brave?
“But I’m not brave.”
What a humble spirit she has. I know many of us moms don’t think of ourselves as brave. But the courage is there, mama. He’s given you a special bravery, and He will give you the grace to reach deep down and pull it out just when you need it the most.Here is what Jill has to say about bravery.
Bravery…what does it mean to me?
I’ve never been a daring person. I was always afraid to be. Afraid that I would hurt someone’s feelings. Afraid that I would get into trouble. I would always hide behind situations or people.
I’ve had to learn to have courage, to stand tall, to face things a young mom should never have to face.
Ten years ago I was diagnosed with MS and I was so afraid! Multiple Sclerosis is when your immune system attacks your nervous system. MS causes a lot of bad things to happen inside your body. There is a chance of paralysis and becoming blind, among many other things.
I didn’t have time for this! I was young with a young family! God has given us two children, and at the time of my diagnosis they were two and five years old. The only person I knew that had this disease had passed away. How could this be happening to me?
Afraid? You better believe I was afraid! I felt the total opposite of bravery. I had moments of despair, anger, sadness, denial. Those feelings will just drag you through the valley of the shadow of death.
I remember praying God how can I do this? Will I die? Will I get to see my children grow up? I had a lot of questions and a lot of things to work through, but I mainly just wanted to give up.
But after days of prayer and reading God’s word, along with encouragement from my praying family and friends, I came to this turning point. I realized that I had been placed in a battle, and like David faced his giant, I would do the same.
Like a knight who puts on his armor to go into battle, so did I. I realized that God had already equipped me for this journey. It wasn’t the easiest thing to do, but God helped me put on my armor a little bit at a time.
You see, every single day of my life is a battle, and my battle may be different than yours, but we all fight one.
Living life one moment at a time is a hard thing to do. You can’t do it alone. I found that out very quickly. Every minute of every hour, and every hour of every day is dependent upon my God and how He directs me. It’s a difficult journey but it’s my journey, with His armor protecting me.
No, I’m not perfect. I still don’t feel brave, but through Him I can be brave.
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9 (NIV)
To learn more about Multiple Sclerosis, visit www.nationalmssociety.org.