Courage Does Not Always Roar

It’s been a long and challenging week, for reasons I can’t write about here. It’s been a week that has shaken the foundations of the life I have built here in Bradford. A week of questioning and doubting myself. Where I have even wondered whether I should stop writing, if perhaps it’s too much of a risk. But writing this blog is something I love and has been a lifeline to me. I’m unwilling to give it up.

The inspiration for this post comes from one of my favourite quotes of all time:

‘Courage does not always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying “I will try again tomorrow” ‘       Mary Anne Radmacher

We often think about courageous people as being men like David in the bible who take on their own Goliath. Individuals who bring justice against the odds, or who overthrow corruption, putting themselves in harms way for the sake of others, or bravely fighting the forces of evil in this world. These are the people who you will see on the news, who will have books published chronicling their lives and documentaries made about them after they die. And they should be recognised and honoured, these men and women show great courage and valour. Yet I think there are other, less appreciated, but equally valuable forms of courage.

For me I think courage can also be a quiet voice. I’ve been reminded of that this week as I’ve seen friends persevering, and battling on, despite struggling with illness or difficult life events. Or in friends who have made the decision to move forward from challenging circumstances with dignity and bravery. Their courage hasn’t roared but it has inspired me none the less.

I see courage in the person who chooses to keep living and hoping each day, despite being burdened by illness or pain. I see it in the mother who loves and fights for her children, despite life throwing countless obstacles and struggles in her way. Or in those who decide to love and trust again, even though they are still wounded by all the times they’ve been let down before. I see courage in those who fail and make mistakes, but rise again the next day to try again.

This kind of courage isn’t loud and doesn’t shout. Those who are displaying it might well go unrecognised and unnoticed, perhaps only God will see it. Maybe you think it doesn’t matter. But I think the courage and tenacity of the human spirit is one of the most beautiful things about humanity. The way that we can be knocked down ten times but will rise again eleven. The world is full of people who have overcome so much darkness and difficulty in their lives, and still face each new day with hope. These people may not change the world, but their bravery and determination should still be acknowledged and praised.

Maybe this is where you are right now. Maybe you find yourself dealing with events and circumstances that are requiring every ounce of your strength and courage. Perhaps you reach the end of the day and wonder how you can do it all again. It might be that, like me, you need to listen to that quiet voice of courage saying “I will try again tomorrow”. Your courage may not roar but God, who sees your heart, will honour it.

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