Family Devotional on Courage
Explore the Meaning:
Courage. What do you think of when you hear the word courage? (Firemen running into buildings, policemen, standing up for what you believe in, etc.)
Do you think God wants us to be courageous? If so, how? (i.e. standing up for our faith, talking to others about Jesus, living out God’s calling for us rather than being afraid to go where he calls)
(For older kids) What is the difference between being courageous and being confident, or even cocky?
The dictionary defines courage as “the quality of mind or spirit that enables a person to face difficulty, danger, pain, etc. without fear. A synonym or word that is similar is bravery.”
Today, we are going to look at how and when God wants us to be courageous! We can make courageous choices every day. Let’s learn how!
Look It Up:
The idea of God commanding us to go forward with courage is sprinkled throughout the Bible from when we see God call Abraham to leave the life and country he knows and courageously go forward, trusting God. However, the word courage only shows up a few times in the Bible. But when it does, it is in the form of a powerful command from God to his people and those leading his people.
1. In Deuteronomy 31:6, God through Moses tells the Israelites that they will need to be courageous as they enter the promised land. The promised land was intimidating, new, and full of other strong people. But God knew they would find victory there, because HE would be with them: “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.” What a powerful promise! God will never leave us nor forsake us! We talked about this last month with faithfulness. God will not abandon us. Let that soak in for a moment!
2. Many years later, King David passes on this same challenge and promise to his son Solomon: “David also said to Solomon his son, ‘Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until all the work for the service of the temple of the Lord is finished.'” 1 Chronicles 28: 20
3. In the New Testament, Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 16:13 “ Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong.” God calls us to be courageous and strong today too, just as he called the Israelites to be strong and courageous, specifically in regards to our faith.
The Bible highlights three main examples of ways God asks us to be courageous.
1. He asks us to face new challenges that He has purposefully put in our path with courage because He will be with us. God called and delivered his people out of Egypt to lead them to the promised land. Yet, taking possession of the promised land was not a walk in the park. It took faith, courage, and strength for the Israelites to push forward.
2. God asks us to be strong and courageous, trusting that He will finish his good works through us, just as he did with Solomon building the temple. If God lays a mission on your heart, He will see it through, but you need to move forward courageously.
3. In the New Testament, God reminded His people to have courage and stay strong in their faith. Being a Christian was not a popular choice. It often meant being rejected by their friends, families, and communities. In many cases, it even meant dying for their faith.
Do you think being a Christian back then took courage?
All three of these examples still apply to us today. God may lead us somewhere that we are scared to go. But we need to be courageous and remember He will be with us. God will finish His work in and through us, but it takes courage to see God’s plan through. Finally, we may not be killed for our faith, but being a Christian and believing in Jesus is not always a popular choice. It may cost us friendships or popularity. And remember, in other parts of the world, there are still Christians who are killed for their faith!
Thinking of these examples, how might God be calling YOU to be courageous? Is there someone He wants you to talk to? Maybe he wants you to talk to the one kid at school that no one likes, but you have avoided because you don’t want people to dislike you. Do you need to stand up for your faith at school or in the workplace? Is God calling you to do something or go somewhere outside of your comfort zone? Maybe on a mission trip?
God, help us to be strong and courageous. We know you will never leave us or forsake us. Help us to keep that truth in our minds at all times. We all have callings that you have put on our hearts, please help us to pursue them courageously! Thank you for the courage and love you showed when you came to earth and faced a terrible death to free us! Amen.
Hide It In Your Heart:
Deuteronomy 31:6: “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”
As a family, create a piece of artwork that reminds you of the reason why we can have such courage (i.e. because God will always be with us). It could be a photograph, painting, collage, wordart, etc. I chose to do a wordart display of some of my favorite verses that give me hope and courage, Romans 8:35-39:
Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written:
“For your sake we face death all day long;
we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Above is my example. Ideally, I would have arranged it into a cross, but I need to update my internet browser before I can do that on Tagxedo.com
Parents, how can you model courageous faith for your children? Where do you need to grow more courageous? Maybe it is in spiritually leading your family, or sharing your faith in the workplace. Remember, young or old, your kids are watching and learning from YOU!
PDF of devotional: Family Devotional on Courage