Courage cannot be denied! Think about that for a moment. Other people can deny you love, joy and peace, but no one can take courage away from you. That is because courage is found only from within. Solely by the grace of God, you have courage when you need it.
Courage of Martyrs/Persecuted Christians
When I think of courageous people, I first think of martyrs; from the earliest Christians, like the Apostles, to the persecuted Christians of today. They all have one thing in common, the persecutors robbed them of their physical freedom and took their lives because they were believers in Jesus Christ, but the persecutors could not rob them of their courageous love for Jesus Christ.
Courage of Soldiers/First Responders
When thinking of courageous people, I also think of those who face danger in spite of the fear. I think of soldiers and first responders, (police, fire and emergency personnel). What these people have in common is that they move towards danger when the average person runs the other way. They act with courage solely for the betterment of others; never putting themselves first. With humility, they will be the last to claim the honor of “hero.” Instead, they take the view that they are just doing their jobs.
Then there is everyday courage – the type of courage needed when standing up for what one believes, even if it results in criticism. Speaking truth, for example, is not always popular. Yet those who defend their religious beliefs, at the expense of “fitting in” amongst secular society are to be admired for their courage to witness to their beliefs.
Where Fortitude gives us the grace to be courageous, courage is the inner feeling/action expressed based on one’s belief; regardless of the consequences of persecution, danger or criticism. Courage cannot be denied!
Why should we be the ones who exhibit courage? We’ll address the answer to that question in our next reflection. Don’t’ miss it!