They’re Always Better Together

bettertogether

Courage. A word typically reserved for a person who noticeably goes out of her way to do something brave on behalf of others.

Compassion. A word generally attached to a person who selflessly helps others without even being seen or known.

To me, these two words go hand in hand. Like bread and butter, courage and compassion add something significant to one another.

The sweet spot of life is found in a combination of the two through private acts of kindness and public displays of bravery. Both are essential to making an impact on the world.

Now, before all the haters get up in my grill about my viewpoint on these two beautiful terms, let me be the first to say that each characteristic is important all by itself. But, like so many other things, when put together, they bring out the best parts of each other.

Let’s look at it this way: I can be the kindest person in the world to MY family in the comfort of MY own home. Behind closed doors. But when I go out and mingle with humanity, I keep to myself and never go out of my way to help someone else. To do that requires a different level of compassion. It requires some nerve. A willingness to be noticed if need be in order to lift someone else out of a pit that they may not be able to get out of on their own.

Our time here on earth is short as many of us know (including myself.) While good people die every single day, bad people keep on living. We can’t just sit by and watch it happen anymore. We need more good men and women to grow a pair, leave their comfortable existence of my family of four and no more, and love the heck out of people. (Yeah, I said it.) All people. Everywhere. Despite differences and opinions and cultures and baggage. This is where compassion and courage collide. An intersection of guts and glory if you will.

It’s so very necessary, don’t you think? The people who died too young would tell us to live each day with wild and crazy abandon sold out to a cause greater than ourselves. Can you imagine them saying that we should live a safe existence that only benefits us personally? Surely not. It’s in the giving away that we get so much given back to us.

How can you be daring in your efforts to help others on both the hidden back roads and in the bright lights of the city? It can be done. There are people waiting for you to overcome your fear of being seen so they can be seen. Being noticed for a courageous act doesn’t make you proud or egotistical. Humility is a trait easily noticed and hardly forgotten. When someone sees your hand outstretched towards another,they consider doing the same thing in their own magnificent way.

We can honor the ones who have gone before us by honoring the ones who are still here with us. Be kind to your families. Be gracious with your coworkers. Be fearless in your pursuit of the downcast, overlooked, and forgotten.

Then love them when noone is watching AND when everyone is looking. Let’s gloriously practice courage and compassion.

It Takes Guts To Be You

photo credit: Iria 02 via photopin (license)
photo credit: Iria 02 via photopin(license)

I went grocery shopping today with my two year old. This is not an easy endeavor. Bringing a toddler along on any shopping trip is always an adventure.

The store was packed. Everyone was in a hurry. But my little Cutie Pie just couldn’t resist the opportunity to sing at the top of her lungs. Right there in the middle of aisle 4.

She sang loud. She sang proud. She wasn’t afraid. She simply owned her song. And it occurred to me that she was demonstrating a confident courage that most of us look for but never find.

All I know is….we all want it.

She was a musical picture of unashamedly being who God made her to be. Did you catch that?

She didn’t apologize for her gift. She simply owned her song.

Not a single person’s turned up nose or applause was going to affect her. And both reactions occurred. But she kept on singing.

I felt like I could both laugh and cry as I witnessed this 5 minute event. The audacity it took to stand up in her cart and belt out her favorite tune. Talk about guts.

But isn’t having guts what it’s all about? In the grand scheme of things, I don’t want to be the person that shy’s away from the opportunity to share my gifts. I want to be the person who owns the moment and sings MY song!

As I watched her sing, I realized something. She was singing for me. Her mama. She was looking right at me with a twinkle in her eye.

She didn’t even notice the others. If they sneered, she didn’t see it. If they smiled, she had no idea. She was looking at me and love was oozing from her heart and hanging onto every word she sang.

What a picture. Can you see it?

GUTS. The gooey stuff inside of us that comes out in moments of transparency. The stuff that gives you the oomph you need to take that next step and go for it. The incomparable nerve that fuels your unveiled self.

How do we own our song? How do we have the guts to share with the world the real person that is inside of us?

Just look at your Maker. Hold His gaze and never look away. He’s already looking at you with a joy that brings a tear to His eyes.