Tag Archives: Be Your Best Brave

Brave People

Celeste-podcast

Be Your Best Brave- In this podcast I share my heart on what it means to be your best brave. I meet so many brave people everyday. And the reason why many of us don’t see ourselves as brave is because we’re too busy comparing ourselves to others so our brave feels inferior. But God never meant for us to compare, but only share our brave stories. And He has given each of us unique gifts and talents so that we can be our best brave! Be encouraged today. You are braver than you think.

Joshua 1:9 CEV- I’ve commanded you to be strong and brave. Don’t ever be afraid or discouraged! I am the Lord your God, and I will be there to help you wherever you go.

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Be Your Best Brave- Mommy Edition

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Since it is so likely that children will meet cruel enemies, let them at least have heard of brave knights and heroic courage. -C.S. Lewis

Last year I started speaking and writing about being brave. I can’t tell you how many women have come up to me and said, “I don’t feel brave.” And if that’s you, I want you to know you’re in good company. If I waited to feel brave before I did anything, can I just tell you, I wouldn’t do much! Brave isn’t a feeling, its just something you do.

I think of my beautiful sister in law who found out a year and a half ago that her husband had cancer- and she’s had to be brave ever since. It wasn’t anything she felt, it was just something she did and continues to do every day. Every time she had to leave her 2 year old for a week at a time, everyday when she’s had to dispense multiple pills and medicines and take her husband to doctor appointment after doctor appointment and therapy and Houston, all the while trying to be a mommy to a 2 year old (now 3 year old). That ladies is Brave.

Before I ever even knew about the Mops theme last year, the Lord began speaking to me on this topic of being brave, starting in Jan. 2014. He began birthing the theme brave into my own heart. The Lord started to change my view on what brave really is. I use to think brave was hiking across the country, mountain climbing, running a marathon, or perhaps fighting world hunger. All of these people in the magazines and on the news looked so brave (and they are). But as I prayed about this new season and the theme He was putting on my heart, I realized I was running into brave people everyday. And if they wore capes, they were invisible. And if they jumped out of tall mountains, they were mountains of laundry. And if they traveled, it was to the grocery store with toddlers. And if they were earning money to feed the hungry children, it was by clipping coupons to feed their hungry children.

I have some friends that are single moms, and let me just tell you- they don’t feel brave, they just know they have to be brave for their kids.

What does it look like for you, as moms of preschoolers to be brave in your everyday lives? Here are 6 characteristics of a brave mom-

1) Brave moms embrace their season. I used to hear all the time, “Enjoy them, this season of them being little only lasts a short time” and I remember thinking, “Then why does it feel so long?!” But now I look back and think about all the times I said, “I can’t wait until…they talk… they walk… they stop whining…” You get the picture. I had so many expectations and worried when things didn’t look like I thought they should look. So I say to you today, embrace your season- the messy, the crazy, the exhausting, and the tender. Because it’s all part of the plan!

2) Brave moms don’t compare. I am so tired of all the comparing that goes on. I look back on the years and realize I have wasted too much of my life comparing what I am doing compared to what someone else is doing. See, the Lord has called us to run our own race and run it well. But I fear we’ve gotten so caught up in what others are doing, we forget who we are and what’s best for our family. And we are critical of other women when they don’t do things like we do. “Oh, you give them formula… oh…” says the die hard breast feeder. “Oh, your child is in public school…. oh…” says the homeschool mamma. Seriously, I could go on all day here. The comparison game is never ending- Spanking vs non-spankers, working moms vs stay at home moms, Homeschool moms vs public school moms vs private school moms. All organic gluten free vegan mom vs… well, the rest of us. I wonder what it would do in our relationships and with our family members if we asked the Lord to help us in this area? To show us areas where we’re comparing ourselves and the way we raise our kids to what everyone else is doing and then ask the Lord to help us to stop comparing. God has a specific way He wants you to raise your kids that may be different from other families- and that’s okay. We gather wisdom, seek advice, read books, pray- and then lead and guide our family with what we feel is best. But just remember- don’t criticize other mamas. We’re all in this together.

3)  Brave moms realize their most important ministry is their family. When all of my kids were littles, at times I felt like the ‘adult’ world was passing me by and my brain was turning into mush. Friends were furthering their education, climbing the ladder at work, and doing things that looked so important. All the while my days all ran together, getting dressed up was a nice top with yoga pants, and fancy dinners were at Chick-fil-A. At times I felt like all those things I had dreamed about or wanted to work on were just not going to happen. As I look back I realize I was doing the greatest ministry ever known to woman- motherhood. I was home- nurturing, encouraging, training, teaching, disciplining, and refereeing…lol. The day in-day out stuff, the movie nights and the game nights, and the zoo days- that’s where it’s all at. These little things are the big things. When I look back I’m so thankful I had that time with them. And guess what? They are older now and still need me but in a different way, and now I can invest more time into some of those dreams. I think I thought I was going to be so old with no energy by the time we got here. So silly. Ladies, we create the temperature in our homes. We keep things together. Don’t resent your husband if they’re not organized enough or maybe they don’t do enough. I wasted so much time focused on what my husband didn’t do, that I couldn’t see all of the wonderful things he can do! We’ve been given the gift of doing these things around our home, staying on top of our activities, finding things. And our husbands need us to encourage them. Sometimes, if they feel like they can never do anything right, they stop trying. Don’t resent or despise your most important ministry, your family.

4) Brave moms get their strength from Him. Let’s face it, in this world you will have trouble. True story. And in our days, we have more than our share of meltdowns, breakdowns, and tantrums. And then there’s the kids… lol. As a mom, everyday has unexpected twists and turns. It can get so exhausting, feeling like you’re carrying the weight of the world. Brave moms find time, even if it’s only 3 minutes. While you’re changing that first early morning diaper, “Lord bless this day, I surrender to You. Give me strength and patience today.” Or perhaps when you are going pee, have some 4×6 index cards with your favorite scriptures on them right by the toilet. Gods Word is powerful and even just a few scriptures in the morning can give you strength and peace. Some great ones- 1 Chron. 16:11, Is. 41:10, Phil. 4:13, Ps. 18:32-34, Ex. 15:2, Duet. 31:6, Ps. 23:4. We need to pray for patience, peace and joy. Brave moms know we can’t do this thing on our own and in our own strength.

5) Brave moms say no. Brave moms say no so that we can say our best yes! Have you read Lysa TerKeurst’s book ‘The Best Yes‘? This book goes into more detail on this topic, but here are a few of my favorite quotes from her book. “A woman who lives with the stress of an overwhelmed schedule will often ache with the sadness of an overwhelmed soul.” She also says, “I know I’m caught in the rip current of people pleasing when I dread saying yes but I feel powerless to say no.” And finally, she says, “Saying yes all the time won’t make me wonder woman, it will make me a worn out woman.” Every single time you say yes to someone else, you’re saying no to your family. So make sure that your yeses are your best yeses! See, I might be good at a lot of things, but I can’t be doing everything. If I did everything I could do, I would be directing kids choir, working in kids church, volunteering in the nursery, speaking, writing, acting…. Do you see what I mean? There is a season for everything and we have to pray about every potential opportunity, because it will be a commitment. We need to pray for wisdom. Right now I have to do what I feel like Gods calling me to do. Don’t get me wrong- we need volunteers- in our churches, in our kids schools, at Mops. But if you’ve been doing it for years and you’re feeling burnt out and you stress out every time you have to get ready for that thing, and you stress your family out because of it, but you feel guilty asking to step down or for a break, well, maybe it’s time to take a break. We can’t do everything. We can all do our part, but we should never feel guilty for using the no word. We are the keepers of our family’s schedules and we must protect that time. They need us to. We went through a season about 2 years ago where we basically laid everything in our lives down. I began homeschooling and my husband stepped down from being the Children’s Pastor at our church. There were no school activities, no fundraisers, no sports, and no church requirements. It was quiet and weird. At first I wanted to immediately fill our schedule back up with things to do. We had been serving in Children’s Ministry for 15 years and for the first time in our marriage we had no ministry responsibilities. Like I said, it was just weird. And over the years, as we have slowly added back things into our lives, I’ve had many opportunity to say yes, but I make sure that they’re things that fall into line with what I feel like we’re supposed to be doing. And with each new opportunity I pray and I count the cost. And I’m okay with saying, “Thank you for thinking of me but I won’t be able to at this time.”

6) Brave moms trust that God will get them through. There are so many things out there that could really stress a mamma out. Amen?! Ebola, Isis, our kid’s schools, wars, diseases. And we all have our own mommy fears- Will my kid make friends, will my kids go to a good school, what if my kid gets bullied, what if my kid ever walked away from following God, what if my kid is the bully? You get the picture here. With all of our fears and all the depressing news out there, it’s enough to make you want to lock your kids in doors and throw out the TV! But brave moms look up. Brave moms realize that no matter what we might go through that God is in control and that God has the final say. Brave moms know that God loves our kids even more than we do. Let me just encourage you today- He sees everything. When our heart breaks, His heart breaks. He hears our prayers and I believe that He’s working everything out for the good for those who love him. Brave moms trust that even on our worst day with Him, it’s better than our best day without Him.

I encourage each of you to your own best brave. Whatever that looks like for you in this next season. Buy a Brave journal– Journal it; document it; and let God guide and direct you to being your best brave mommy. Amen!

 

What I Learned from My Running Group

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 1 Cor. 9:24 (NLT)- Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win!

I used to run when I was in High School. For me it was my therapy. When my parents would be fighting at home, I would take off, and run as fast as I could. And I didn’t know it at the time, but I was fast. If you’ve ever seen the movie 4 Minute Mile (its on Netflix), I was that boy. He had a very rough home life and he would just run to clear his mind and push through the pain. In the movie his mentor, who was like a dad to him, told him, “You have to face that thing that scares you the most.” This is a must watch video clip from the movie! (Click here)  4 Minute Mile

For the first time in his life, this young man finally had someone who believed in him and called it out of him. I will never forget when I was in 9th grade and I had basically given up on pretty much everyone and everything. I was failing all of my classes, I would regularly cut school, and I didn’t feel like I was good at anything. I was in my PE class and they had us running. The Running Team was out there practicing. I remember as I was running by, overhearing the coach say to one of the runners, “she’s pretty fast, go run with her.” And this guy from the team ran with me and pushed me to push myself. The coach approached me afterwards and asked me to join their team. I don’t remember his name or what he looked like, but I will tell you what I do remember. I remember for the first time someone seeing something in me and calling that thing out.

I have been pretty consistent at one thing in my life, and that is running. There have been times in my life when my kids were little that I stopped all together running, but it’s in me, and I always find my way back to running. This past year I joined a running club, M2M. I will be quite honest with you, because, well, that’s all I know how to be is honest. When I moved here from Colorado I wanted to join a cycling group or a running group but I never felt good enough or fast enough. I was always worried I would slow the group down, because I ‘thought’ if you’re in a running group or club, well then, you must be really good and really fast. I always just felt like I was just regular and had to wait until I was really good to join. I have since discovered that this just wasn’t true at all! There are several really great running groups in the Valley and they are all for all levels! Over the year I have thought about this group and how we, as Christians and the church, could learn so much from a running group.

Why I love my running group:

1)  They motivate and encourage me to be my best. I love all the smiles and high fives and words of encouragement I get on a run.

2)  When I feel like giving up (stopping), others are there to push me to keep going.

3)  I am not alone.

4)  I am a part of a team.

5)  I didn’t have to look any certain way or be any certain shape or size to join the runners group. They seriously just love everyone. And everyone is invited!

6)  I am always being invited to events and activities to keep me plugged in.

7)  I can go to as many or as few running activities as I am able. But they never give me the cold shoulder or act awkward towards me if I haven’t been in a while. If I haven’t been in a while, they’re just happy to see me back.

8)  When I’m on a run and it gets hard, I’ve learned to push through it.

9)  We are like one big happy family.

10)  You don’t have to wait to join until you are super fast or super buff! We all are at different levels and we all learn from each other and grow together.

I’m not saying everyone is born to be a runner or you aren’t living unless you’re a runner. I’m simply taking the lessons I’ve learned from my own experience and running with it (you see what I did here?!).

Here’s my top 10 of what I learned from my running group:

The lessons (taken from above) that I learned from my running group make want to grow and become a better person.

(1) We should continue to motivate others to be their best and be all that God has called them to be. We should be giving high fives and celebrating others.

(2) We should be somebody’s cheerleader and when they feel like giving up, may we be the ones to encourage them to keep going.

(3) We should remind those around us that they are not alone.

(4) As Christians, we should spend less time this year focused on those things that separate us, and may we spend more time focused on what we do have in common! We are all on the same team here!

(5) We should love people just as they are! We shouldn’t care so much about if someone is like us or not, or their age, or how they dress, or their size. God loves all people and so should we!

(6) We should continue to go to events, bible studies, conferences, and retreats to stay not only plugged in to our church, but to grow in our walk with Jesus.

(7) We should welcome people if we haven’t seen them in a while instead of making them feel like they’ve been backsliding. We don’t know their circumstances. We don’t know if their kids have been sick, or they’ve been sick, or they’ve been out of town. They definitely aren’t going to want to come back if they’re feeling judged.

(8) One of the biggest life lessons through running and being in this running group is that my body can actually do way more than I ever give it credit for! Being a part of this group has shown me that. I’ve done so much more than I would ever do on my own. And it’s the same way in life- when life gets hard, you remember that you can do hard things and you learn to push through. You can actually do so much more than you give yourself credit for.

(9) I have a friend who doesn’t have any family here and their running group is their family here. It’s the same with the church. I’ve heard others refer to the people in their church as their church family. And we should resemble a family. We won’t always agree. But at the end of the day, we’re family and we’ll agree to respect each others opinions whether we agree or not. That’s what family does. And most importantly, that we’re there for each other. If anyone is hurting or has a need in our group, may we be the first to step up and see how we can help carry the burden.

(10) Some people feel like they have to be spiritual enough first before they can go to church. This couldn’t be farther from the truth! That’s what church is for- to grow together and to learn from each other. None of us have arrived and we won’t arrive until our life is done and we meet Jesus face to face! We are all on a spiritual journey and we’re all in a different place in our walk. This is how it should be. Don’t wait to come to church… just come!

Whether you are a runner or a jumper or a dancer or a Zumba master, or a cyclist, or a jujitsu person, or a speaker or a writer or a mamma or _____________ (you fill in the blank here)- may we all take these lessons, and figuratively speaking, run our race to be all that God has called us to be!

Hebrews 12:1 (NLT)- Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.

Let’s All Be Brave- Stop Waiting to Feel It

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Remember the high board at the swimming pool? After days of looking up at it you finally climbed the wet steps to the platform. From there, it was higher than ever. There were only two ways down: the steps to defeat or the dive to victory. You stood on the edge, shivering in the hot sun, deathly afraid. At last you leaned too far forward, it was too late for retreat, and you dived. The high board was conquered, and you spent the rest of the day diving. Climbing a thousand high boards, we demolish fear…
Richard Bach- A Gift of Wings

I am the best starter ever. I have started a thousand books. Don’t ask me how many I’ve finished. I started reading ‘let’s all be brave‘ by Author Annie F. Downs. And no pun intended (well, maybe some), but I didn’t want to put it down (see what I did there?). The message in my heart all year has been, be brave, step out, don’t compare, be your best brave. I ordered her book because I was researching the topic of brave. And this book spoke words my heart needed to hear. Sometimes in a quiet, encouraging whisper, “Hey, you’ve got this, it’s time.” Other times shouting to the fear that likes to hang around all too much, “Hey punk, leave, I’m doing it anyways.”

When I moved from Colorado to Texas, many of you know I didn’t want to move. I wanted to live and die in Colorado. True story. But God had other plans. And just like Annie talks about her move from a place of friendship, family, and comfort, I too was leaving a place that was all of that and more, and embarking into the unknown. But God knew. And He’s reminded me since something that I hold so deep and dear in my heart…. my home is wherever I am with Him. He is my home. But I never ‘felt’ brave. Page 53- “I never felt brave. I never had a moment of extreme courage or belief that this was going to be the best decision I had ever made. I just did the next thing. Quit my job. Sold my house. Packed my belongings. Said good-byes.”

I’m convinced that many of us are waiting on a feeling. We want to feel brave before we step out. We want to feel brave before we jump off that diving board. We want to feel brave before we make that next move. But we get stuck. We get stuck on the diving board of life. The jump looks too high. The fall makes our stomach turn a bit. And we wait. And wait. Let me rewind and tell you what would have happened had I waited for that ‘brave’ feeling. My 20 year old self would have never packed up her life and threw everything in her car and left Palm Springs, CA. headed for Bible College in Oak Cliff, TX. My 30 year old self would have never left her comfortable spot as the Children’s Pastors of a large church in Irving, TX. to head for a small church in a parking lot in Castle Rock, CO. (which BTW has since has grown into the largest church on Castle Rock, CO.). And my 30 something year old self would not have left a huge chunk of my heart in Colorado to head for South Texas (Literally five minutes from Mexico). And last, but definitely not least, my 39 year old self, had I waited to ‘feel’ brave would have NEVER agreed to my husband quitting his position as the Children’s Pastor, pulling my kids out of private school, homeschooling, once again selling our house, moving in with my in laws for a year, and starting a non-profit. Seriously, if I had waited to ‘feel’ brave, my adventures might be limited to anything that feels safe and comfortable, which ironically can’t quite be counted as an adventure, now can it?!

Let me make something quite clear if I haven’t already- BEING BRAVE ISN’T A FEELING. Page 37- “I know my my tendencies and fears, and I also know my gifts and hopes. It’s where those meet that I often find God cheering for me to make the brave choice. You have to believe in the One who made you. I am confident in who God made me, but certain I couldn’t do this life-or be brave-on my own.”

And everyone’s brave is unique and different. Page 41- “…God made us each on purpose. If we are unique as the Bible says we are, then our calls to courage are each equally unique.” “We each just have to be brave in our own ways.” Someone once said. “Be Your Best Brave“. Okay, it was me.

Some of you reading this have regrets. You wish you had done things differently. You wish you had taken that trip when you had the chance or chose another job than the one you have now. Here’s what I know about God- (1) He uses everything. Nothing is wasted. (2) It’s never too late to start living your brave.

And if you feel like your best days are behind you and wonder if there’s even any point to asking God what His brave is for you, I have this quote from Michael Hyatt1614356_10152539872289385_2062504460153364420_oHere’s the deal- you still breathing? Okay, then there’s braver living to be done.

You have today. And that is more than some. No one ever said that being brave was going to be easy. But I promise, it is worth it, choosing brave over comfort, it is worth it… Every.Single.Time.

The last thing I want to say on this (seriously, I could quote this book for days), is about her chapter on ‘the rhythm’. She talks about the ‘D’ word. I know, I know, don’t check out yet. In our day and age the word ‘discipline’ has gotten a bad rap.  Whatever brave step He’s calling you to take next, you won’t get there by sitting around and ‘hoping’ something happens. Page 181- “Professionals choose to practice, even when it hurts, because they know that practicing gives them the strength and power to perform in clutch moments.” Page 189- “Your discipline, the rhythm that makes you the best you- whether it’s training your body, your mind, or your spirit- shows up when it is time to say the right thing, do the right thing, be the brave person you want to be. It’s the practice that makes perfect, and the practice that makes you brave.” So stinkin true. Look at discipline as your tool to preparing you for your next brave move.

If it’s not obvious enough, I definitely recommend this book. Annie writes from her own brave place and I love how her voice comes through in her writing. She writes from many different coffee shops, so if you know me, she had me at the first coffee shop!

Let’s pray….

Lord, I believe you’re calling us to step out, into the great unknown. (Sorry, about to sing an Oceans song). Lord, guide and direct us to live this life that you’ve given us brave. Help us to kick fear to the curb and do it anyways. We can’t go back and change what’s already been done, but we have today. And I pray we don’t waste it. Thank you that we are brave because You make us brave. Thank You that You redeem everything and with You, nothing is wasted. Am I breathing? Yes. I have purpose. Help me to be my best brave so that You, Lord, would receive all the glory in my life. Amen.

 “What if I fall?” Oh, but my darling, what if you fly?

BTW…Want it on sale? Click here… Let’s all be brave…. (you’re welcome) 🙂

Brave Retreat/Brave Journal

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“I don’t feel very brave,” was a comment I found myself hearing more and more. I speak. I haven’t spoken a ton, but more and more doors have been opening lately. I feel really blessed. And I also along with the feelings of joy and nervousness meshed together, I feel fear. I use to wonder how can something I absolutely know I’m called to do make me so anxious. And then it clicked. A calling isn’t a feeling. It’s something we know, something that’s been confirmed in our hearts and spirit that we’re supposed to be doing. And honestly, if I waited to feel brave (courageous) before I did anything- well, I wouldn’t do very much. Being brave isn’t a feeling. Let me repeat that in case you’re just waking up… brave isn’t a feeling. Brave is something you do.

I was invited to speak at a church this month in New York. I’ve known about this opportunity for a while and had much time to prepare and pray. I felt ready- yet still not feeling particularly brave. But I know it’s what I’m supposed to do. And I stepped out into the deep waters. I left behind the shallow shores and was obedient. And here’s the thing- I loved it. I really did! But I still get nervous and have to silence the enemy’s voice daily. All the ‘what-ifs’ swirl through my head: “What if I look at my notes too much?”, “What if it’s too serious?”, “What if Gods anointing doesn’t show up?”  And I have to get back into His Word and remind myself of His promises. That song by Bethel is right on, He Makes me Brave. It’s His Word and His presence and His voice inside of me that makes me step out and have courage (bravery).

I am still reveling about the ‘Be Your Best Brave’ Women’s Retreat. God reminded me during that time that my job is to be obedient and step out. That’s it. And He takes over. He’s just looking for a willing and obedient vessel- willing to step out into the deep, regardless of our feelings. Brave is definitely not a feeling.

But even more than just seeing God bring me through and confirm the call, He touched my heart through these women. These women that I was sent to encourage, encouraged me. Leaving that retreat, I was encouraged more than anything to be my best brave in the area of my family- my first ministry. And these aren’t major things here people, but they are important! These are things like making sure I’m available more to my kids, especially the evenings & weekends and being fully present (intentional). Taking care of my house, making it a peaceful home, not a cluttered, chaotic home. Being more of help mate for my husband. Sometimes I’m so focused on encouraging other people, I forget my husband and kids need it most from me. One girl said her husband is in the navy and they just moved (again), and she’s not working and people keep asking her, “So, did you find a job yet.” Or they ask her, “So, what do you do?” God was asking her, “What if your only job was to take care of your home and your husband and be the best (brave) wife that you could be?” In other words, if that was her only ministry at this moment, could God be enough for her in that? I just sat there, totally blown away by her heart.
‘Brave Girls Wait’ really hit home with a lot of the women. Some are feeling restless, wondering what’s next. I talked about what it looked like to wait on the Lord. Waiting isn’t sitting around eating bon-bons while waiting for Jesus to fly in and deliver our next mission. Waiting for us is a verb. It means reading His Word, studying His Word, journaling and writing down what He’s speaking to us, spending time in our prayer closets, turning up the praise & worship and just worshiping Him. That is our Brave Wait. And not feeling guilty about it, you know, about not knowing what’s next. It’s all part of the plan. Allow yourself to wait on the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart (or change your desires to line up with His desires).

Last story (there are so many, I could write for days). One sweet girl was a new Christian. She said she realized that she’s been dating guys because she’s attracted to their parents. What I mean is, she has some abandonment issues with her biological parents and if she was dating a guy that maybe wasn’t so good to her, but she loved the parents, she might stick around longer. She craved that parental attention. And as we were all talking, in comes Mrs. P. Mr’s P and I could relate because of something that happened to both of us in our past. I really like Mrs. P. An older woman, very loving and kind and nurturing. She looked at this young girl, who so desperately needed a mother figure in her life and said, “Would you let me love you and be that for you?” Who does that?! Tears fell (from all of us!) and she said, “Will you let me just hug you.” And as they embraced I felt like God was pouring out His healing balm all over this young girls heart. And I later told Mrs.P, “You are my hero.” (and she said she didn’t feel like a hero, because we never do, do we?) Something I told the ladies that weekend was this- “The place of your greatest pain will be the place of your greatest ministry.” Mrs. P lives this out every day.

Thank you ladies for causing my heart to overflow with love, gratitude, and joy!

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This retreat in a few words….

To God be all the glory.

He makes us Brave.

 

 

 

 

Now for my special announcement if you haven’t heard already!!!! Our Be Your Best Brave Journal!!!

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In March, the Lord gave me a theme for this year. I journaled my little heart out, researching brave songs, brave scriptures, brave definitions, and brave quotes. And then I had an idea. We all do things everyday that are brave for us. I wrote my most popular blog ever, ‘Be Your Best Brave‘ (realizing that this topic struck a chord for a lot of us). The Lord was moving me to do things that were brave for me. They might not have necessarily been brave for someone else, but they were brave for me. And I wanted a special place to document my brave, where it wouldn’t just get lost in the lines of my journal. That way, whenever I was feeling especially timid and not very brave, or discouraged, feeling like I should be farther along in my journey, I could go back and see see how the Lord has made me brave and He has me in my journey, right where I need to be. From that place was birthed my Brave Journal. And I have to say- this is me stepping out and being brave. At no point did I feel qualified or that I am the final authority on being brave. It’s me stepping out and being obedient. I could not have done it without my husband (who typed in everything for me and made sure the format was correct and supported me) and my crazy talented graphic designer Jen Wagner who did all the brave graphics throughout this journal and the cover. I was able to finish this journal in time for my Brave Retreat and was so excited to get them in the hands of many ladies. It is my prayer that you would get this journal, and get them into the hands of your friends, daughters, aunts, sisters- and I even made these journals gender neutral for guys too! If you’re local, I am doing a book signing at Starbucks (on Morrison) on Sunday Nov. 2nd from 4-6pm, or I can sign and ship directly to you. Private message me your address and how many you want, or you can just order them directly from Amazon! (Oh, and if you’ve started yours, can you pretty please go to Amazon to leave a review… this really helps a sister out!) Or you can order direct from the publishing company CreateSpace.

My friend just received hers last week and this is what I told her-

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Honesty, when I run, when I speak, when I write and spill my guts, when I clean the house sometimes, I don’t do it because its easy and I just happen to have all this free time. Hahaha… no. I do it because Greater is He that is in me, and the same power that raised Christ from the dead lives in me. And because He makes me brave!!

So go get your Brave on!!! And get your Brave Journals!! If you’re interested in me selling them at an event or a craft fair, doing a signing, or me bringing them and speaking at your group (Mops, church brunch/event, women’s event), just use the contact form on my website.

Let’s all go out and not only be our own best brave, but encourage others to be their own best brave too!!!  And when you share your stories of you doing something brave (stepping out of your comfort zone) please hashtag #BeYourBestBrave on facebook, twitter, or Instagram so I can find you being Brave and we can all encourage each other!

Your Best Brave is on the other side of your fear.

Be Brave. Be Strong. Don’t Give up. Expect God to get here soon.

Psalms 31:24 (MSG)