The goal of Courage Season, October 1-November 22, is to get this meme on your mind and watch what God does then.
Glancing at the meme or repeating the words to yourself takes no time from your schedule but you get to count it as a SYNC exercise. It affects how you See Yourself iN Christ.
Meme = Declaration + Prayer + Image
The meme is a summary of the whole point of Courage Season. The tricky part is that both the Courage Declaration and the Courage Prayer in the meme are profoundly simple. They make sense even to a child, and yet the great minds of the world will never really exhaust them. They never get old. They keep getting you ready for the next challenge. Try them and see.
The "Courage Declaration" is, "This is a day of risk, and we have courage."
It is very risky to ask Christ to SYNC your life with his plan for the world. The risk is that his plan may (probably will) involve some serious pain you would rather avoid. People who don't like his plan will cause you trouble if you join it.
The Courage Declaration prepares you to face that risk every day. This is not a wishful pretense, like "whistling a happy tune" in a dangerous situation. It is a way of SYNCing your day with the courage Christ showed in the Garden of Gethsemane just before his torture and execution.
As Jesus saw the agony coming, he told the Father, "Not my will, but yours be done" (Lk. 22.42) That's what we SYNC with in the Courage Declaration. We sign off on God's plan, regardless of the pain level involved.
When we start the day like that, the prospect of pain will not catch us off guard. Jesus saw it coming, and he told us to be ready for it too. (Jn. 15.20)
The Courage Declaration is not a boast about our bravery. We were not naturally brave people. We got our courage as a gift of the Spirit of Christ and his presence inside us operating even at the subconscious level of our fears. We can't explain what is going on that deep inside, but we know courage is there and growing.
The "Courage Prayer" is, "Give us the courage to be crucified. Make us bold. Make us bold. Make us bold."
The Courage Prayer doubles down on the commitment in the Courage Declaration. It makes sure you are in SYNC with Christ's world-changing intentions when he said, "Not my will, but yours be done." (Lk. 22.42)
The Declaration sets the courage rhythm. In the Prayer, you start to dance to that beat.
The Prayer is a way of saying, "Yes, please. I want to move with that Declaration. I already have courage and I am asking for even more. I want to act honorably before the Commander who sent me into this battle."
This prayer echoes the prayer of Jesus' early followers after they were jailed, warned, and released. "And now, Lord, pay attention to their threats, and grant to your servants to speak your message with great courage . . ." (Acts 4.29 NET)
The Courage Icon and Image
The lightning bolt in the icon reminds us of a risky situation.
The meme image (top of page) shows the risk we accept if we SYNC with Christ. We "take up our cross" and follow Jesus (Lk. 9.23), that is, we sign away our rights to control and comfort.
We are on a risky mission. If we get despised, injured or even killed in the process, we refuse to back off from the mission. That is courage. We put our own welfare at risk because we believe so deeply in something that is a lot bigger than we are.
Jesus did it. We do it. End of story.
(In preparation 10/1/17)
What are the other seasons besides Courage Season?
Life, Connection, Freedom, Power, Forgiveness, and Glory. Courage follows Forgiveness in the cycle.
Why doesn't everybody love us if we are good people with a good message for them?
It's about control. Lots of people are going to kick against any message that tells them to hand control of their life over to someone else. That's what we are telling them Christ wants.
What happened in the Garden of Gethsemane, and how does it change the game for us?
In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus faced the same issue Adam and Eve faced in the Garden of Eden--God's way or their way? Adam and Eve took things into their own hands. Jesus signed off on the Father's will. Both choices set things in motion that still affect us every day.
Isn't SYNCing with Christ supposed to bring me blessing? Where does pain come in?
Christ has sent us out "like sheep among wolves" (Mt. 10.16), which is not exactly a safe situation for the sheep. He has told us to take up our cross and follow him (Mt. 16.24), and only doomed people carried a cross.
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