i choose hard

I only pretend to be brave. I've been known to say that. A lot. But a friend helped me see how untrue that really is.

For as long as I can remember, I've desired to follow God courageously. While I've never been very self-assured or confident, I've often made decisions that fly in the face of all logic. I've chosen not to play it safe.

I've always known that God's called me to hard. I knew it when this suburban girl spent two months in rural Africa as a teenager and loved it. I knew it when my passion to return there seemed illogical to everyone else. I don't like extreme temperatures, bugs, or even the outdoors... and yet I wanted to live in Africa!? It didn't make sense; it still doesn't.

My own pastor told me that being a missionary was the worst thing I could do with my life. And yet, at 19, I up and moved to Africa. I've been told over and over again that I'm too young, not educated enough, lacking experience. But I've shrugged it off and just kept right on going.

I've chosen hard over safe.

And if that's not brave, I don't know what is.

I don't say that to pat myself on the back. I say it simply to acknowledge the truth that I've exhibited more courage than I ever realized.

I needed to discover that about myself. Because as difficult as this past season has been for me, this next one isn't going to be any easier. And seeing past courage more clearly helps steel my heart for what lies ahead.

Once again, I choose hard.

And even though I still don't feel brave, I'm gonna do it afraid.

And trust that He will be faithful to carry me through it.

Just like He always has.