Be Brave

Charles Naylor, 1920
 

Be brave! Only the brave are strong. The coward is a weakling; if he has strength, he dares not use it. We must be brave, for life is a battle. The forces of good and evil are in deadly combat. You cannot avoid having a part in the conflict. You must fight whether you will to do so or not. There will be obstacles to meet no matter where your path may lie. You must overcome them or they will overcome you.

Do not dream of a time in this life when all your obstacles will be overcome. There is no day so bright, but the darkness follows. There is no ship that sails the sea, but must meet the storms. No tree sinks its roots so deeply into the soil, but its strength is tested by the fierce gale.

Upon you will blow the piercing winds of adverse circumstances. Things will come that you cannot foresee. Do not shrink before them when they appear. Lift up your head, throw back your shoulders, look them squarely in the face and with courage born of faith, meet them in the strength God will give you.

Sometimes it may seem that to endure is impossible. Your strength may fail but when you have come to the end of yourself, God will add strength, and that added strength will mean victory. Be brave. It is only when you bravely face the foe, that you can know the measure of your strength. There can be no defeat, to him who will not be defeated. Circumstances may prevail against you for a time but if you fight manfully on, the seeming defeat will end in victory.

Napoleon once fought a battle and lost. His troops were driven back. One of his marshals, who with his troops had not arrived in time for the conflict, came up during the retreat. Napoleon said to him, "We have lost the battle." "It seems so, sire," was the reply, "but there is still time to fight another." Encouraged by the words of his marshal, Napoleon rallied his troops, attacked the enemy, and won a great victory.

In the same way, if defeated never count that defeat final. Attack the foe again and keep at it until you win.

Bravery is a quality of mind and soul. You may be weak in body, you may be timid and shrinking but if you will, your soul may rise above all this and wax strong in God. Courage is the basis of your strength. It will bring strength from God. But should he give you ever so much strength, only through courage can you make use of it!