About the Author

Robin is the author of For All Who Wander, her relatable memoir about wrestling with doubt that reads much like a conversation with a friend. She's as Southern as sugar-shocked tea, married to her college sweetheart, and has three children. An empty nester with a full life, she's determined to...

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  1. Last November, God really started lighting fires in our women’s ministry and my how that fire spread. One person stepped out and answered the call to leave, three more followed. They began their work, and their bravery inspired me to start leading bible studies. Now we have three If:Tables, held an IF:Pray gathering and are planning on hosting for the wider community in February. Bravery begets bravery. Oh and we’re leading our own womens retreat this weekend, 25 ladies in Bridgton Maine, and three of us get to teach and lead in ways we never have before. Swimming in bravery over here! Intentional use of the word swimming, not drowning!!

      • Ha! Means something totally different with that little word correction :).

        It’s amazing what God can do in us when we take those brave baby steps. Such an exciting time in the life of your church.

  2. Q1: This for me was chapter 3 – believing in myself, just start something and trust the process. And it is okay if it doesn’t turn out perfectly. I am still loved.

    Q2: I have this friend, and I see her as brave and courageous, not fearful. Now, I know her well enough to know some of her struggles and difficult places, but still, she inspires me to be brave. Undaunted. Free.

    Q3: Right now, brave is being willing to step out of comfort zones, go to another country and speak to women there about being brave. It is saying to God, “Here am I. Send me.” And, it is being willing to share my story, even the really hard, difficult parts because even though those parts are filled with shame and sin, the rest of the story is filled with redemption and grace, forgiveness and love. And people need to hear that.

    Favorite quotes: Both are from chapter 3 (I am reading on Kindle, so don’t have page numbers)
    “To see yourself the way God sees you is the first step in being brave.”
    “To believe in yourself means to believe that God made you and they is no one like you, that you have a unique call to courage, and that you can do the thing that is staying you in the face.”

    • Oh this is all so good. I can sense an amazing work in your life. So many sparks of bravery.

  3. I’m still patiently waiting for my book to come, but I loved when you (Annie) said “you don’t get to define my brave”…sometimes I feel like I don’t matter because people don’t understand that this is my brave, and they write me off…

    • It’s so hard to care MOST about what God thinks of us because we feel the brunt of what others think. I’m so glad we have these important reminders in Annie’s book.

  4. Q1: Thank you, Annie, for the first sentence of the 1st chapter. Admitting you’re not brave is not a scary thing. I’m also not naturally brave. But I try to be. I do my best to be.

    Q2: My husband is the brave person around me. His confidence and bravery boosts mine. Most of the good changes we made for our family are due to him.

    Q3: I’m thankful that my bravery led me to start writing and selling my own ESL stories for children (I’m an English teacher in my country). And this is something I really love doing as a second job.

    Q4: “If you’ll be brave, I’ll be brave. And when I’m brave, you feel like you can be too. We are holding hands and I promise I won’t let go.”

    • You bring out a point that was new thinking to me–how your bravery inspires my own. I need to hear that over and over…

  5. My brave was signing up for a discipleship class at my church, despite not knowing how I will find the time for the reading and studying with three kids, three activity/school schedules, a full time job, etc. I felt God telling me this was something I needed to do, to make studying His Word a priority (the accountability of the group will help with that) and everything else that NEEDS to get done, will. For this planner, my brave is going ahead not knowing what that will look like for the rest of my family.

    • If you sense the Lord leading you into this I’m convinced he’ll help you orient your priorities to thrive :).

  6. My brave right now is difficult to share. My boyfriend of four and a half years recently enter rehab for prescription drug addiction. The difficult part is that I won’t be able to see him for two years. We can write to each other but since we are not married and visitation is limited to immediate family only, this is going to be a long two years. I want to be brave for him and support and encourage him but I know I need to be brave for me too. It’s going to take a lot of being brave the next two years but I know God is with me every step of the way.

    Some of my favorite quotes so far:
    From Chapter 1:
    “That’s how risk takers roll. That is not how I roll.
    But I want to be brave.
    And I’m going to ask you to be brave too, even if you, like me, don’t take to it naturally. I’m here to ask you to please do that thing in your heart that scares you to death. To make that move or leap or step or sound you wouldn’t have made a week ago.
    There is no formula and there are no rules. There is the Bible, our guidebook for all things, but other than that, being brave is organic and spiritual and a unique journey for each person.”

    From chapter 2:
    “And I can tell you firsthand that the moments of my greatest fears those times when I was sure I was going to wimp out under the pressure of it all have also been the open doors to the greatest changes in my life. So I step out, full of fear, but trusting that God is on the other side in new and wonderful ways. And so far? He always is.”

    From Chapter 3:
    “And you, my friend, have a unique call to be brave.
    So when you hear me say, “Believe in yourself,” this is what I want you to think about. Don’t believe in yourself in such a way that you think you can accomplish anything on your own. You can’t. To believe in yourself means to believe that God made you and there is no one like you, that you have a unique call to courage, and that you can do the thing that is staring you in the face.”
    “God believes in you too. He believes in all the ways he made you unique. He believes in all the dreams bubbling in your heart. He believes in your ability to take hold of the tiny ledge that is your next call to courage.”

    • Oh how I’m praying wisdom and grace over you! Your brave is no easy thing but I believe God can reveal himself beautifully during this season.

    • Thank you so much for being vulnerable and sharing your story. Your brave is also full of love and commitment. I’m so glad your boyfriend is receiving help and glad you are a God fearing support system for him. You are modeling Jesus to him.

  7. I absolutely loved the first three chapters. I’m still trying to figure out what my brave is… to be honest, sometimes it’s just getting out of the bed in the mornings =) I wish God used neon signs to flash what it is He wants us to accomplish in our lives. That’s why I loved what Annie said, “Who says that what you are doing right now can’t be God’s work?” And it is.
    I loved what Annie said in the video about creating a culture where it is ok to fail. Too many times in our society, we focus on success, and have a skewed vision of what that even means. I think we need to allow each other to step out, knowing that sometimes we are going to stumble and fall.

  8. Loving this study! Annie you are so brave! I am on my way to send the 5 stars you deserve:) I read through this in 3 days (fast for me)!
    I am so glad you spent time on seeing other people’s brave –respectfully. We need to step out in courage by en-couraging each other with the freedom to speak our hearts. If we are in fear of failure in the midst of our own sisters how could we possibly be brave to the outside world!

    Fav quotes:
    Page 38 (kindle edition) “God is perfect (we are not). He sees the big picture (we do not). He knows everything (we do not). So I choose to believe in this – that I am who I am on purpose, that the One who made me has a purpose and has unconditional love for me and those in my life.”
    Page 41 (kindle edition) “To see yourself the way God sees you is the first step in being brave.”
    Could go on and on….
    ❤ you ladies!

  9. I haven’t figured my brave out yet. Am I supposed to lead a new group at church? Quit my job? Take a class? Travel somewhere? Those are all out of my comfort zone and I’m just trying to discern what God is asking of me.

    Q4: I loved the 4th paragraph on pg 36 – “I believe in the me God made and in the me God can make … And that is the place where I find my courage.”

    I am very excited to see where this book takes me. I want to find my brave.

    • Know what I think? You’re on your way to finding your brave. Seekers have a way if finding 🙂

  10. Oh wow, I am almost done with Annie’s book and am so excited you guys are doing this study. We ALL need more brave! My brave has been writing about the thing that I am the most sensitive about: living with bipolar 1 disorder. After almost thirteen years on meds and in therapy, my major mental illness can almost go undetected to people who don’t know me. I felt God calling me to talk about it on my blog, and it took me a year after starting the blog to get up the courage to write about bipolar! I know it’s a God calling when I’m quaking in my boots, though!!! Pushing through the fear of stigma, fear for my kids that parents wouldn’t let them come to our house because of their “crazy” mom, fear that I would never work in ministry again, and leaning into those fears has been an incredible ride so far. And, I am working in ministry, my kids have friends still, life is richer than it ever was. God is so good. Annie, thank you for writing this book. It encourages and inspires me to keep going through life brave. God bless you!!! Love, Taylor Arthur

    • It sounds like your obedience to doow the Lord’s leading had yielded great blessing. That is a precious thing.

    • Taylor, I greatly admire your courage and strength! I struggle with some mental health issues as well and it is hard not to fear the stigma.

    • As a mom with two sons who struggle with depression, thank you for being brave and your willingness to be open on your blog. I think for people who are struggling with illness knowing they are not alone and that someone understands is comforting.

  11. From the very first paragraph of the introduction I felt like Annie had somehow read my thoughts. In fact in the journal I am keeping as I read, I rewrote the first paragraph, editing out her specific details of place etc and adding my own.

    I am not a naturally brave person either, but people see me that way. They see a risk taker and someone with spunk and confidence. But I don’t own those feelings all the time and I sweat alot! as I enter new situations. Me brave? Really? As I read Annie’s words that there are no formulas or rules I went EEK! That is where I felt the cement solidifying around my ankles. But I got a first step of courage from going to YouTube and listening to Steven Curtis Chapman’s song, “Burn the Ships”. That is where I start. Can’t sail backwards to that safe place. Here is what I have learned and affirm so far in my reading. I am one of a kind….made on purpose…deeply loved….called to be courageous. Thanks be to GOD!

  12. I have been being brave. I moved across the country five years ago to marry my husband after he got a job in Virginia. Then we moved to Germany for nine months. Next it was Richland, WA. And back to Lynchburg, VA where we bought a foreclosure and stripped it, cleaned it, and rebuilt it together while living in it once we got the bathroom installed. Each move I went out and made friends. Each time it took courage for this shy girl to go join a Bible study and be open with the women there in that study. This year something happened and I felt called to stay home. Just be home with my husband. I love the home we built together. I have also felt strongly, that I don’t want to live here anymore. I want to move closer to my family. I told my husband (The first brave step). He said I need a plan (I’m not a planner and usually when I make plans it’s a huge struggle that falls short). There is no work for him there (near family) in his field. My dream, my hope, is to be able to buy my Grandma’s house and remodel it so that it is up to date and a nice, happy, place again like I remember it as a child.

    So for me, my favorite part of this book, the part that made me start crying my eyes out, was when Annie told the young girl heading off to college, that it’s ok. I really needed to hear that it’s ok if I don’t want to live here. It’s ok if I want to move back closer to my family.

    Meanwhile, I have no plan other than save money and live life here because it’s where we are. My daily brave is just giving thanks for what I have, continuing the keep the house, make the meals, walk the dog, love my husband, and be patient until God shows me a way where I can see no way.

      • Sarah, praying for you during the waiting time. I moved to Texas for college and stayed there after I got married. Several times I tried to move back to my home state of Louisiana, but nothing opened up. I finally just tucked the idea away in the back of my mind and sort of forgot about it. In 2011 I got a job with a firm that had an office in Baton Rouge, and my work dealt with Louisiana matters. Twice the subject of me moving to Louisiana was brought up (by someone other than me), and twice it was shot down. The third time was the charm. 🙂 I can’t say that everything fell into place immediately – my husband had to take a “thank God I have a job” job for the better part of a year until he found the job he currently has, and we had to live in a skunky little rent house for a while. But we are here, and God made the way. Keep the faith – if home is where God wants you, He’ll open that way up to you.

  13. Q1: My Ah-Ha moment within the video was the discussion about failing and still feeling loved. I know that I often times seek success and perfection as a means to justify God’s love for me. And I fail miserably all the time. I loved hearing the ladies emphasize that our success or failure does not effect His love for us.
    Q 3: Right now my husband and I are in the middle of a season trying to get pregnant with no success. My bravery looks like not completely falling apart every time I think that childlessness might be a reality in my life. I praying that it isn’t, but bravery for me not tying my value and worth to each pregnancy test that comes up negative.
    Q 4:I loved the passage in chapter 3 (not sure of page number because I am reading along on Kindle) “We’re going to explore a lot of sides of courage. Like peering at some sort of Kaleidoscope crystal, no twp people are going to be see the same thing when they look for a brave moment. God is THAT creative.”

    • Katie,

      Q3: Me too. It’s been over five years for me. I’ve found it to be both brave not to fall apart every time, and ok to let myself fall apart. It’s been helpful for me to give myself a lot of grace just like I would if I was grieving.
      Dear Lord, Please help Katie and her husband. Bless them. Give Katie peace in her heart as she bravely faces that pregnancy test each month. Remind her that you love her just as she is. You made her. You planned for her. And you have a good plan for her life and her marriage. Thank you that you brought me to this place today to pray for her. Lord, please fill her hearts desires. Bless her and her husband with children. Fill their home. Lord, I know you are powerful and mighty and able to do all these things I ask in your name, but bravely I ask, not my will, but yours be done in Katies life. Let your will be made perfect in her life. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

  14. My brave is changing careers after 20 years self-employed at home, homeschooling…. big change! this book has been an answer to prayer!

  15. My brave.. Not walking away from my life completely after suffering a terrible loss and realizing it’s ok to feel , trust and love again but still feeling safer with less and few . I’m a work in progress…. I’m not the strongest Christian but I’m stronger than I was….I cling to God and scripture with all that I am…
    Thank You Annie for sharing Let’s All Be Brave..

  16. I have a few brave things right now going on in my life. I recently returned to a job that I had no desire to return to because we need the income. My husband and I are embarking on a new budget plan which is drastically different from our previous non-existent plan. Last but the most important, I am starting to feel nudgings in my soul that God is leading me to something and I don’t know what it is yet but I have a feeling it is leading me to my God-given path.

    Favorite quote was in the first chapter. “You burn your ships.” This struck a cord with me because it is necessary for me to always have an escape plan. Which is good if it doesn’t become a crutch. I used those escape plans as a reason to not try harder for the original plan to work. I am horrible at follow through and I need to burn those ships so I complete the given task or goal.

  17. My favorite paragraph:
    “He just chose to be brave at every turn–to do his job and protect his sheep. And as the challenges grew in scope, so did David’s belief in the ways God had uniquely created him, and more importantly, David believed wholly in who God is and in the reality that David had a role to play on this planet that would require courage.”

    LOVE THIS. I love how God doesn’t just drown us…He GROWS us…little by little, gently molding and crafting us into she who He calls us to (individually) be.

    Our inheritance begins when we say Yes to Jesus.
    Our impact is a slow walk on a fall day (with gusts of wind).

    • “Our inheritance begins when we say Yes to Jesus.
      Our impact is a slow walk on a fall day (with gusts of wind).”

      Well, that’s lovely Kaitlin…poetic. 🙂

  18. Oh my goodness, so much good stuff, where to even start?

    Well, the story from the song Burn the Ships (mentioned in the intro) was my starting point. Immediately I knew what my “ship” was, the thing I turn to instead of being brave, and so I have removed it from my life. Scary, but liberating.

    The brave thing God is calling me to do is to homeschool my boys. Both of them have special needs and need a lot of individual one on one teaching. And so, homeschooling for us begins the first week of November. Don’t really know what I’m doing, but I’m trusting God and researching like crazy, and trusting that God will do awesome things in my boys’ lives (and mine too!) through this new adventure.

    • I remember how nervous I was when I started homeschooling my children. I was afraid of not being a good teacher, not teaching them the right things, and what people would say. You are doing a brave thing. God will give you strength and wisdom you didn’t even know you had. Good luck on your new adventure!

  19. I absolutely loved this book! One of my favorite quotes from chapters 1-3 is “I believe in the me God made and in the me God can make. I believe he made me on purpose and didn’t make any mistakes when it came to my creation.”
    After glancing back over the chapters this morning, I also was really encouraged by this statement: “You aren’t the runt. You aren’t a subpar Christian. You haven’t sinned your way out of your calling, and you haven’t lost your chance to make a difference for
    Christ.”

  20. I really enjoyed hearing Annie talk about how brave looks different for each one of us, and appreciate the comment in the video regarding a review of her book and the idea that no one else gets to decide our brave. That is something I need to hold tight to.

    Four years ago my brave was taking the first steps in following God’s call to the mission field. Today, in the midst of an almost four year battle with a significant eating disorder, depression and PTSD, my brave is merely doing life. It’s showing up to my (very part-time) job, making it to church, taking my elderly neighbor to her appointment, trying out a yoga class, etc, despite fear. It’s working to accept the fact that I don’t understand this fear that has developed around doing almost anything involving other people, and trying to fight off the shame. Doing life is a daily battle, so for now, it’s my brave.

    Thank you, Annie, for being brave and sharing this book with us.

    • My dear Deedee,
      Your brave is also speaking out loud the scared that invades your insides. What a beautiful vulnerable you showed here. May I be the first to thank you for it. For your brave. Because you are SO VERY right: brave can so often be “merely doing life”. Because my dear, doing life can be knock-down, drag-out, bruised-bone brave. I am sitting here hugging and high-fiving and cheering your choice – your often minute by minute, not just daily choice – to be brave and live life. To walk outside that door. To climb out of that bed. To stare the confusion in the face and not back down or cower from it, but to see it, to stand in the midst of it, and say “ok, hi, now what do we with you?”
      I will pray that you are able to tangibly feel His continued presence and direction. That you viscerally feel that He has not left your side or forgotten your dreams or His will for your days. That you can believe that He is remaining, looking with you at that confusion and saying “I know what to do with you. We’ve got this. Trust me. Let’s do this today.”
      It’s often moment by moment. And glory lives there. In those moments of choice: choosing joy; choosing hope; choosing love; choosing belief; choosing brave.

      I hope you continually come back here and share with us where the battlefield took you that day. “But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:37-39, NASB)

      You are a conqueror!

    • Deedee,
      Your brave is what many of us need to admit is being brave. Doing life, just doing life, does take bravery. May God bless your journey in tangible ways.

  21. Q1. I loved the insight that Annie shared on the writing process — and how her book evolved like pieces in a puzzle. 🙂

    Q2. My best friend’s husband passed away in January after fighting cancer for 5 years. She is raising her 2 girls as a single mommy now. On most days, when I fee like I am overwhelmed, I remember her – I think about how brave she is, and I tell myself to “suck it up” because my life is really not all that bad.

    Q3. Honestly, I wish we would all just give each other a little more grace. Annie response to her “negative Nellie reviewer” made me smile. Some people just don’t get it, do they?

    Right now, “Brave” for me is just holding on to hope — This morning I read the story of the woman who reached out for the hem of His garment in Matthew 9. For me, brave is that. I need to keep reaching out to Him.

    Q4. I actually did a VLOG about this quote as part of my 31 day series on my blog last week. It is going to stick with me for a long time — “.. sometimes you set sail without a view of the destination, trusting the tools you’ve got. And once you are there, you stay. You move forward, not backward. You burn your ships.”

  22. Being brave is believing that today’s struggles are God’s way of making me into the person He longs for me to be so that I might bring glory to Him and be of maximum use to Him in the building of His kingdom.

  23. Mark 9:24 – Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”
    This is my “Ah ha” verse. I find myself struggling to BELIEVE / BE BRAVE, and I just need to ask God to help me in my unbelief.

  24. I needed to hear that my brave is unique to me. I often get so caught up in what brave thing someone else is doing that I forget about what I have been called to do.

    Brave begets brave…I see it all the time, all it takes usually is for one person to stand up and others follow. When I have someone next to me being brave it is much easier for me to be brave.

    I have several braves. I am still struggling with this and it all boils down to sharing my own story. I have been called for quite some time to share my past but I lack the courage. I am afraid of being judged and in reality I am afraid to face the past again.

    Favorite quote: “You just have to start, my friend.” This is where I always get stuck. I am a dreamer and the ideas just pour in but starting is a problem.

  25. This book is helping me to see what has been happening the past few years of my life. I am a quiet person naturally, and always worked in healthcare, where you don’t talk about things (confidential, privacy). So lots of things I have kept to myself over the years, not that this was a problem… but God has been pushing outside my comfort zone to new things, meeting new people, talking in front of people (I am a more one on one type person), and sharing my thoughts! It’s really a new world to me do this with people other than my family.

    While I am not sure why God is leading me where He is (am not sure right now I need to know) I am trying to totally trust in Him! It is not easy sometimes, but I am trying to be brave, and believe He will equip me, cause I am not very confident many times, so this book is really helping me to see that is okay, and others are going through it too!

    My favorite quote in the book so far is, “That did not hurt enough for me not to do that again.” I often realize afterward something that it was not that bad, and the next time will be easier!

  26. My “aha” moment was: “He [God] knows we need dreams in pieces because we would be too scared of the whole puzzle.” Isn’t that true? So much uncertainty in this life, so many dreams and plans, and it’s really hard for a planner like me not to be frustrated with not seeing the whole puzzle, or map, or blueprint for my life.

  27. Annie, love the song thank you 🙂

    Q#1 I loved when Annie said “courage can’t be done alone” I’m always hesitant to share what I would like to do, or dreams I have, I guess because many times there are so many negatives..

    Q#2 I have a friend who was very ill and she was a new believer, we prayed and prayed for God to heal her, I saw her grow in her faith and trust in our Savior and several months after a lot of tears and prayers, God answered our prayers, a doctor visit confirmed she was healed. Thank you Lord, we give You all the glory. Being a part of my friends life has blessed me in so many ways, she is an amazing lady, loving mother, and grandmother, and loves the Lord. Watching her has given me courage, and I praise God for each and everyday I awaken to see His beauty.

    Q#3 In 2013 I felt God nudging me to start a prayer shawl ministry, I resisted for awhile, but then after much prayer and soul searching I took the first step (that was my brave moment) and it has been such a blessing. There is five of us now and we use our God given talent to bless others with these beautiful shawls, to spread the love of Christ who brings them His love, joy, comfort and peace. It is not only a blessing for the person receiving it is a tremendous blessings for our little group…

    Q#4 There are so many quotes that I have highlighted, underlined, notes I’ve written. But I think that page 42 “To see yourself the way God sees you is the first step in being brave”…..has been my number one.

    Thank you ladies for the video. Thank You, Thank You, Thank You Annie for the book. I’ve already read it once and I’m going thru it again with this study and finding new tidbits that speak to me now. Let me tell you the inside of my book is very colorful LOL… Blessings to you all
    Anna

    • “To see yourself the way God sees you is the first step in being brave” I loved this too. I think I’ll need to make it one of my intentional living quotes and keep it in sight for a while…maybe forever!

  28. Still trying to figure out my brave. But I do know God is giving me a vision and I need to trust him. My favorite quote is “To see yourself the way God sees you is the first step in being brave.”

    Love that!

  29. Q1 – pg. 1″I don’t think it’s fun to risk…learning the easy way.” Aha, yes!
    Q2 – It’s often my own kids who are so brave – they are often my heroes. 🙂
    Q3 – Right now my brave is navigating high school with my oldest child – it’s a beautiful, awesome world our God created, but I get scared and so does she at times.
    Q4 – “My failure doesn’t define me. _Neither do my successes._”

    Loving the book!

    • hi Bridget!! 🙂 I know you are being brave, along with your daughter.. and it’s been neat to follow along with that some. Way to be courageous! I’m loving the book so far too!

  30. These first three chapters put the thing I fight to hide right in front of my face-my fear! The fear that is keeping me from starting, or even if I have started, from making it very far. My favorite quote relates to that “I don’t fear failure because it doesn’t define me. Neither do my successes.” And that is what I plan to say by the time I am done with this book.

  31. Q1. As you listened to Annie, Jessica and Angie discussing the first three chapters, did you have an “Ah ha!” moment?

    I have always been afraid of failing but I never knew why. When I heard the part of the discussion on even if something doesn’t go well you are still loved, it made me think that was where my fear stems from.

    Q3. Annie stresses the point that “my” brave doesn’t necessarily look like “your” brave. We want to hear about your brave.

    I have social anxiety so being brave for me is getting out and about around people and not feel like I have three heads, haha. Now that my children are grown, I attend church by myself. Just walking in alone is a challenge. I am fine one on one or two on one but once a bigger group is gathered I get very quiet and timid. I want to show people how much I care about them but I can’t do that if I’m not brave enough to go up to them or open my mouth. I am definitely a work in progress.

    Q4. Share your favorite quote from Chapters 1-3.

    “I believe in the me God made and in the me God can make. I believe he made me on purpose and didn’t make any mistakes when it came to my creation. I believe he is doing a good work in me, and in you. And that I am flawed. God is loving me and refining me and reminding me that God in me is where I can place my trust” pg.37

    I know I cannot be brave in my own strength but I can trust in the God who made me.

    • Hi Sheri,

      Thank you for sharing what your brave is. It has helped me to be brave enough to share mine. I also struggle with a bit of social anxiety, though it looks a bit different than yours. I’ve suffered from anxiety and panic attacks on and off for 10 years. Lately though that fear of having a panic attack has made me afraid of every day normal situations because I’m terrified of having one in front of others and causing a scene. Sitting in meetings, in church, even in my car at stoplights because I’m not able to immediately control my escape. It’s really hard for me to accept that I struggle with these things that have never bothered me previously. I think finding a way to accept that this is me and that this is what I struggle with instead of shaming myself is probably the first step to being brave and conquering this! The fear we build up in our heads can be so much worse than what actually transpires.

      I know how tough social anxiety can be and I am praying for you Sheri! For strength and bravery and confidence and healing!

      Sarah

  32. I enjoyed reading about King David and Gideon. I learned that they grew into bravery and were not fully brave at first. This is encouraging to me as I think that beihg BRAVE all at once would be overwhelming.
    This is my first Bloom study. Yeah!

  33. Q1: I loved when Annie said, “You don’t get to define my brave.” It made me realize that I’m defining my brave in comparison to other people’s brave. I’m thinking that what I’m struggling or going through isn’t worthy of bravery, and that makes me feel like I’m just not enough. Not for me, not for God, not for my family or church or community. But I get now that I was wrong. Just as other people don’t get to define my brave, I don’t get to define my brave by other people’s brave.

    Q2: I’ve been looking for a job that would pay well even if it means leaving where I am right now. Well, God has been telling me to stop looking. And I can only believe that’s God because to obey scares me to no end. But He’s telling me that I’m where I’m supposed to me.

    When Annie wrote about David, she said, “He didn’t kill the bear in preparation for Goliath. He just chose to be brave at every turn – to do his job” (p 22, Nook). That flew to my heart because I need to be brave where I am right now. It’s not giving me the best financial situation, but God’s been providing nonetheless. Yet I’m still afraid.

    My best friend left her nursing job to pursue a higher degree. Then her boyfriend proposed. Even with the looming expenses, she’s not running towards another job because she knows getting that education is what she’s meant to do right now. That’s her brave, and it’s feeding mine. If she can be brave with no job and upcoming wedding/marriage expenses, then I can be brave where I am.

    Q3: Annie said she wasn’t brave but she just “did the next thing, took the next step, said the next yes” (p 40, Nook). That’s my brave right now. Saying the next yes where I am. Staying put until God tells me it’s time to move. Doing what I’m doing and trusting that God knows what He’s doing. Because He does.

    Q4: I love this, “God asked me to open my hands, and he gave me the world” (p 41, Nook). God’s been asking me to let some things go – including that job hunt – and simply trust Him. I lose sight of the perspective that Annie points out in this quote. I feel like opening my hands mean I lose everything, but really, I gain everything. I cannot receive what God has for me if my hands are occupied with something else.

  34. Thank you the exhortation to encourage other women to be brave in their particular circumstances. We need to do this! An ah-ha moment for me was understanding that my brave looks different from your brave! And might be different in different situations, too.

  35. I just got home tonight and my book was waiting on me….so excited! Listened to the video and enjoyed….now Let’s get started on, “Let’s All Be Brave” living life with everything you have ( :

  36. I just love knowing that I’m not alone in all this. I had an idyllic childhood and feel like I should not have “issues”!! 😀 Bravery is, in fact, my main issue. My Aha Moment happened when I realized that it had always been important to me to be perfect, so that I never disappointed my parents. Mistakes might result in disappointment, so better not make mistakes. In order to not make mistakes, I better not risk anything. If I don’t indulge in risky behavior, I don’t have to be brave. Oh what a tangled web…

    Can’t wait to get more wisdom from Annie!

    Ellen

  37. Q1: In all honesty, I read the first two chapters thinking “Yeah, I used to be that enthusiastic….until life changed me.” My aha moment came when I read Annie’s liberating words on page 45 “You aren’t a subpar Christian. YOU HAVEN’T SINNED YOUR WAY OUT OF YOUR CALLING, AND YOU HAVEN’T LOST YOUR CHANCE TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE FOR CHRIST.” Thank you, thank you!!!!

    Q2: My friend Kelly lost her husband to a tragic accident at the age of 35. Since that time, she has trained for and completed an iron-man triathlon and gone back to law school…all while maintaining her role as a chaplain in the army (not to mention serving God in Afghanistan by ministering to those in the military). She inspires and challenges me to live beyond myself.

    Q3: My brave involves teaching my kids to learn about, believe in, trust in, surrender to, and follow the God who loves me relentlessly.

    Q4: I mentioned my favorite quote in the first question, but I also LOVED page 37: “I shouldn’t believe in me, at least not in the way they think I should. I’ve been me long enough to know that I am not someone to be believed in. I screw up….I believe in the me God made and in the me God CAN make….And that though I am flawed, God is loving me and refining me and reminding me that God in me is where I can place my trust.”

    • “You aren’t a subpar Christian. YOU HAVEN’T SINNED YOUR WAY OUT OF YOUR CALLING, AND YOU HAVEN’T LOST YOUR CHANCE TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE FOR CHRIST.” Thank you, thank you!!!!

      Amen to that!

  38. 1. Figure out what the first thing is and then do the next thing. I want to know what the next thing is before I do the first thing. Because what if my first thing isn’t really the first thing? What if it’s second or third or ninety-fifth? I KNOW all will work out or be revised or maybe even not work out, but I overthink until I’m paralyzed.

    2. An example of someone who showed me how to be brave was the superintendent of my school district. Several years before my daughter passed away, her 16 year old son died in a car accident. As soon as Donna heard from my principal Kimberly passed away, she was at my house. I went to school to drop off something, and when I got home, Donna was sitting on my sofa, waiting for me. Some of her words stuck with me, and I repeat them to others who lose a loved one, especially a child: look for the gifts. The gifts found in memories; the gifts offered by others during this difficult time.

    Donna ministers to many parents who have lost a child. Her example helped me start to do the same.

    3. My brave is learning to listen and be compassionate. I am not compassionate by nature. In fact, on “Spiritual Gift Tests,” for 32 years, I scored 0 (zero) in mercy. Spending 10 years caring for my daughter on-and-off when she was in the hospital with various complications from her juvenile diabetes, and then her death at 32, changed my heart to someone who WANTED to be compassionate. I have to rely 100% on God to accomplish even a fraction of what others have in compassion, but I keep moving forward. And God, in His faithfulness, keeps giving me lessons so I grow.

    4. My favorite quote: Remember, it’s not just the X that matters; it’s getting there.

    Thank God for that; I can’t read a map anyway.

  39. With 4 kids under 4, my brave is getting out of the house with all 4 by myself. Today I went grocery shopping with them. We did great!! God is teaching me to let go of control and go with the flow.

    • Long ago, I kissed my mom goodbye after she helped get me and my second daughter settled. As I shut the door, I thought, “What do I do with two of them?” My girls were 20 months apart. My best friend has four, all 18 months or less apart. What fun we had!

      But, oh, yes, you are brave just leaving the house! Enjoy every precious second. It will be worth it, I promise!

  40. My “AH-Ha” moment was “I didn’t believe that I could mess up and still be loved” pg34 I loved hearing this because it was so me for so long. Not that I would ever want anyone to feel this way, but knowing that there are those who do makes me feel less alone, and I think that feeling less alone helps so much when one is trying to be brave.
    As far as examples of bravery from friends and family, I have rich examples.
    I have experienced a big season of loss in the last year, three family members, two friends, four of them to cancer. Oh, ladies, they were so brave, to the very last breath. Through their example of love and faith through it all I have learned so much about bravery and facing problems head on.
    What does my brave look like? Well, for right now my brave is adopting through the foster care system, loving children who aren’t mine, trusting God to take care of them even if they don’t get to stay with us. It is a huge leap of faith for me, who much prefers the comfortable, familiar, and easy to the unknown and difficult.
    My favorite quote has to be,”You aren’t headed out to find courage. It’s in you, it is blooming, and it is with you as you travel and say yes to things that seem scary” pg23 Right now that just fits so perfectly, with our adoption journey, with this season of loss, with everything we are doing at the moment..

  41. My current “brave” is putting my life on hold as I care for my father in his health issues. I am an only child, my parents are divorced, his siblings have passed away, and I am the one making decisions for his welfare.
    My favorite quote is, “I don’t fear failure because it doesn’t define me….” (pg.35)
    I look to the future with hope because…”He believes in all the dreams bubbling in your heart.” (pg. 45)

  42. Q1. I really liked when Annie and the girls were talking and Annie said “Start something, then trust the process.” It sounds so simple but I know the weightedness of such an endeavor. That, and her beautiful moment of declaring “It’s important where if you say ‘This is really hard for me’, that someone says ‘I believe you’. Another person doesn’t get to define my brave.” Gorgeous. Poignant. Something that settles in.

    Q3. My brave?…..my brave….It seems the overplayed song on the radio that is wonderful the first 50 or so times one hears it, but then becomes old hat and a little irritating in its repetition…I want to write. I’ve been writing since I could hold a pencil in my hands and reading for just as long. College is the first time I allowed myself to really explore “Could I do this for a life? Can it be more than just a hobby?” But here’s my quandry: what on earth could I possibly have to say that hasn’t already been so beautifully said??? How can I add to the wisdom of the Annie’s or the Angie’s or the Emily’s or the Ann’s or the Beth’s or fill in the blank with the dozens of amazing, strong, brave, wise women who no doubt know more than I do, have the right timing and know the right people -sure – but more than that, have the beauty to share and lovely to speak. It’s been spoken. What could I possibly add? My harmony is feeble at best to the melodies already flowing.
    I fight the tears as I type because I know it sounds trite and small and cowardly. But….my heart is here in these sentences. It is the tip of the proverbial iceburg of self-defeat. I am so much better and thoroughouly enjoy and thrive on encouraging others in their endeavors. I have zero application when it comes to myself.

    Q4. I’d actually never known about the Spaniard ships sailing for Mexico in 1519 (p.17) and I loved that correlation. It was beautiful. And I so agree with Annie (I’m the SAME way) when she divulged that “..I absolutely love retreats. You now why? I love when all my friends are trapped in the same place for days at a time. Is that weird?” (p.23) So not weird. I used to say in college that I wanted for 6 or 8 of us friends to rent and RV and take a week long road trip. Everyone thought I was crazy. But it sounded awesome to me. 🙂 And yes. Yes to Annie’s confession: “I didn’t believe I could mess up and still be loved.” (p.34) Yes.

    Oh..I broke the rule for #4 didn’t I? 🙁 Sorry!

    • Leigh, I can very much relate to your “brave”. I am currently venturing into the world of blogging. I love to just take time to journal my thoughts and I feel led to share those thoughts with others. I too have the same feeling you described, wondering what else I could add to the discussion that hasn’t already been said.
      Your brave is not cowardly and your writing is beautiful. You can do it!! 🙂

  43. I love this book!! My brave, right now, is caregiving for my father, who struggles with worsening Alzheimer’s and dementia. I have chronic illness, so I feel like I’m not there for him always…like I’m not doing enough. There is no one else to help, so I stay in prayer about this a lot. Constantly asking God for strength to support and care for my father. I don’t want to be brave about this…I want my dad back, but I know this is a season God is putting us through. The bravest people I know are those who can do what God requires of them and choose joy, even if the brave is hard.

  44. My “Ah-ha.” Start! “The moment you take that first step, the moment you start, little seeds of courage, the ones I believe are already planted there right now, begin to sprout in your heart.” I need a little courage to deny those thoughts of doubt that say I can’t do it and just start…take that first step (leap?). that’s the fertilizer that starts those little seeds growing. Oh, but I have to start. That’s the hard part for me.

    Observation that encourages me to be brave. I have a friend who is active nurturing young people, in many ways. I have admired her courage in stepping up to fill a need for disadvantaged youth in a trailer park by starting t minister to them, and then growing that ministry to include her husband, who cooks, and working with the mothers to teach them how to make healthful slow cooker meals (with her church providing slow cookers for the mothers). She just does these things!

    My brave? It is hard for me to say yes to a commitment that will tie me to a timetable. There is something right now I think God is asking me to do, and I’m just wading in without making a commitment. That probably doesn’t sound like much need for bravery…but for me, it is. im not really starting…I’m stutter-starting. I don’t think that’s enough. I need to commit–to be willing to commit–if it’s what God has for me.

    My favorite quote. “We each just have to be brave in our own ways.” Goes right along with “You don’t get to define my brave.” When I look at you, I may not realize how much courage it took for you to be able to do something that might require little courage for me. I think I need to be more of an encourager to others. I don’t know when a word of encouragement from me might be just what they need to boost their courage.

  45. First off, I just wanted to say that I love how God intricately places things in our life at the right time. This book is one of those things for me. I can identify with what Annie is writing on so many levels, and that makes me that much more excited to continue to read this book!

    Q1: My “Aha” moment listening to the discuss was when Annie talked about not decided what someone else’s brave looks like and whether it was brave or not. I love this! It was convicting to me on both sides of the fence. It gave me confidence hearing that, hearing that no one else can decide what my brave is and it also made me take a step back and look at when I have decided for someone else what was brave and what wasn’t.

    Q2: Can I say that most of the amazing women in my life do this on a regular basis? 🙂 Honestly it would be hard for me to choose, because I am surrounded by such an astounding group of brave women. If I had to choose, I would actually pick a discussion I had today. A friend of mine is being called to something she is fearful of, something out of her norm and she has been diligent in her prayers over this and God has answered. Of course, not the answer she was hoping for, but for the answer she knew was coming. She is stepping out into something that is unknown and scary and it is so encouraging to see her faith and bravery in this situation!

    Q3: Right now, I feel I have got a couple “braves” going on. My husband and I are praying about and seeking guidance about taking a leadership position in our church. It has been difficult to hear, but this has been spoken into our lives from those around us for a couple of months now. The other “brave” I have going on is starting a new blog. Literally new, just purchased the blog today, and I am quite overwhelmed and questioning my sanity :-), but I feel this is something I am being led to do. I am excited but nervous to put myself out there for others to see.

    Q4: My favorite quote so far from chapters 1-3 would be: “To see yourself the way God sees you is the first step in being brave”

  46. My Brave is living everyday in Addis Abeba, Ethiopia. My husband and I came here 2 years ago. Everyday is still a challenge. We left behind our 2 girls(26 & 23) in the states. I miss them everyday! My brave is trusting them to God everyday. It’s been a challenging 2 years. Doing this study feels like I am not alone in my brave! It’s comforting to know others are on the same journey! My favorite thought this week ” First step-To see yourself the way God sees you!! It’s easy to become discouraged by my “feelings” of inadequacy and insecurities. Taking my thoughts off of my past failures and keeping my eyes on how God sees me has been helpful this week!! So glad that I have computer connection and can be a part of it.

  47. Q1: my ah-hah moment today was when Annie said, “You cannot be as brave as you’re called to be if nobody else knows that you are doing it.” Sometimes I like to be a secretive Lone Ranger person so this hit home.
    Q2: my brother, he lives all out & keeps his heart open & isn’t afraid to be uncomfortable and start hard conversations. He inspires me alot and has challenged me recently (in an uncomfortable conversation!) to be brave.
    Q3: amen and thank you! Yes. I get discouraged that I haven’t grown more or moved ahead by leaps and bounds. Instead, it has taken all I have just to stand my ground, hold on to hope, be steady. During my last few years of college, my parents separated, I had some health issues, things just fell apart and I had a lot to deal with.
    Q4: “Remember, it’s not only the X [destination] that matters, it’s getting there.”

  48. 1. “You don’t get to define my brave.” I love that Annie could say that out loud. I hope that I can say that for myself and for others. There is no deciding for someone else if what they are doing is brave.
    2. Brave begets brave- I have a friend who just left the foreign mission field. That might not sound brave to you, but when you do what God asks you to do and it could get you a lot of criticism even from well meaning brothers and sisters, that is brave. Maybe even the bravest thing I can think of.
    3. I live overseas. My husband does ministry, and works at a fabulous non-profit vocational school, but I stay home and homeschool my kids. My brave is telling people what I do. I fear writing newsletters or sharing about my life here, because it doesn’t feel like enough. Because it leaves me open for criticism. To put things out in the open where someone might say, “that isn’t enough; I don’t see how that is brave.” But others don’t get to define my brave, do they?!
    4.”If we are each as unique as the Bible says we are, then our calls to courage are each equally unique.” (After discussing not feeling as good as a “5 star missionary”). I am crying even as I type that line. It is beautiful. Thank you Annie, for being brave and letting your writing be published, even when it leaves you vulnerable enough to receive comments that say you aren’t.

  49. “God asked me to open my hands and he gave me the world” I have read the first three readings and truly inspired and had me looking at myself and where God has put me. Thank You

  50. Q3 – My brave is really opening up and letting people see ME. I have a fear of letting people see creative things that I do. I make earrings. I started because one Christmas i didn’t have a lot of money so I made earrings for some of my family members. I really never let anyone outside of my family to see them. My sister-in-law decided I needed a swift kick and paid for a table at a vending event, knowing that since it was for a church i would never turn it down. So I was forced to make enough inventory to fill a table. I fretted for days because total strangers would see my work and i wasn’t sure it was good enough. But it I went and it didn’t kill me. I haven’t done another one yet but another friend decided she was going to tell the world via Facebook that I made jewelry and posted a photo. Somewhere in the neighborhood of 20 pairs were sold in a couple of days because someone else believed in my ability more than I did. So I am very bravely trying to set up a site to display some things. This book came at a time when i needed some encouragement to move forward. No my brave doesn’t look like your brave, but then it really doesn’t have to.
    Q-4 My favorite quote is ‘To see yourself the way God sees you is the first step in being brave. If you are seeing yourself the way God sees you then you can see your strengths and weaknesses.’

    God says I am enough. I need not compare myself to anyone else. I have a purpose that i am uniquely perfect for, because He created me for a specific task that only I can do (or I wouldn’t be here). That statement really was less for you than it was for me. Sometimes I have to remind myself. 🙂

  51. People tell me I’m brave, that I do all kinds of things that run against the current and that I show confidence in those things in the process. But while I recognize those things are brave to other people, they don’t feel particularly brave to me, because nothing about them has me holding back. To me, the brave things are those you know you need to do and in my case desperately want to do, but don’t for fear of________________ (insert one of many reasons here). Because of this, the quote I highlighted, re-read the most and read aloud to my husband was “To believe in yourself means to believe that God made you and there is no one like you, that you have a unique call to courage, and that you can do the thing that is staring you in the face.” Because it’s been staring me in the face for years.

    I have never done a Bloom study and I only hop over to the in(courage) site once in a while, but I totally see that I needed to visit the site when I did. I needed to buy the book and dig in with intention. I needed to read the comments here that show bravery in many forms and feel the love and encouragement of the many who shared their own hearts (which by the way, have had me in tears). This is how I know this is the book, these are the conversations that will help me to take my big brave step. I’m excited to see all of you working to take yours too!

    (Okay, so now I find myself singing that old hymn “Trust and Obey, for there’s no other way…”. I didn’t know we’d get our own theme songs with this study too! Haha.)

  52. Q1. My “Ah ha!” Moment: Just knowing that I’m not the only one. There are other women out there who need encouragement to be brave, just like I do.

    Q3. My brave: Me? It’s been more than one time in my life that I have felt called to speak in front of others. Once, the summer I turned 16, after Creation Northeast. Again, in college. Then I got pregnant and it all fell apart. Fast foward a few years to being married, now with 4 kids. I feel the calling again, but everyone says “that’s not for you” in one way or another…yet again, I place it on the back burner. In the meantime, I develop an outline on fear. Here again I am. Stronger than ever, I feel the urge to write about fear. So here I am…slowly progressing (and when I say slow, I mean S.L.O.W.). I’m starting to follow my brave. But terrified to say the least.

    Q4. Favorite Quote So Far: “I don’t fear failure, because it doesn’t define me. Neither do my successes.”

  53. Q3 – I don’t know if this has already been said or not, but a part of ‘my’ brave being different than ‘your’ brave is the fact that we can not judge each other on what our own brave is. Like Annie was saying in the video, essentially – you can’t judge my brave and I can’t judge yours. And in the book where she was talking about ranking of Christians based on calling – you just can’t do that. There is no hierarchy of whose brave is better than someone else’s brave.
    Rather we need to form a society/community (whatever you want to call it) where instead of judging someone else’s brave (even our own), we are building each other up in our own braves. A society where I’m not ashamed of my brave and I applaud you in yours.

  54. I have enjoyed reading through the comments, seeing all the different kinds of brave! Am so enjoying this book, and yes, hearing how the book came together does deepen the connection with Annie’s words… Her vulnerability and honesty are refreshing and I think it was important to read first that she wasn’t naturally brave. Immediately relatable! That was Q1 answered:)
    Q2: My family were not risk takers, and I grew up in a very, I thought, overprotected environment, so it was really my friends who inspired my bravery…’ rebellion’ in my family’s eyes, such as getting councelling for a really heartrending breakup, when, to them it was a sign of weakness to need a ‘head shrink’.
    Q3: If I think about my brave, it always started out with a certain amount of fear, just doing the next thing my heart was telling me. In hindsight I can see the hand of God in the brave decisions I made and that He was with me even through all my bad choices, directing me to better ones…
    One defining story was this one: I wanted to follow my dreams of dress design, having been accepted to attend a design school/college and then found out I was pregnant before I finished matric. I kept it to myself in fear that I would have to remain at home. I had the plan in my mind… Find out if I could still study while pregnant… Note, this was the 80’s and pretty radical for then. The first day at design school, I told my lecturer, who also was the school’s founder, and he assured me if I was dedicated and didn’t quit, I could continue with my studies there. The next weekend, being already 4 months along, I told my parents and after the initial shock, they offered to help me look after my baby when the time came so I could continue with my course. I missed 41 days of school and graduated top of my class that year. My son is now 25, at varsity himself, and I have enjoyed that many years of dressmaking!
    Now, the call to be brave comes in the form of being nudged to share/ write my story, and being rather private, and decidedly not a ‘writer’ I tell the Lord, I am finding it difficult knowing where to start.
    Q4: “Your life, start to finish, is a map and we are HERE”
    Perhaps HERE is exactly where I need to just start and let the story come out ‘unchronologically’ at first so to speak.

  55. Q1: My favorite “Ah-ha!” moment was in chapter 3 when Annie says that we all have our own unique version of being brave and we need to believe in ourselves. That our “calls to courage are each equally unique.”

    Q3: My brave is that I want to be an actress. More than anything! I want to tell incredible stories, travel and build relationships while hopefully bringing God’s light into a dark industry. I unfortunately didn’t get the experience that I had hoped I would in college. I’ve faced a lot of rejection, hurt and wear and tear on my heart over four years and even now being over year out of school it’s still a hard thing to deal with. I even had the very thought today at church that how can being an actress really serve God?

    But I’m crazy excited about this book and I adore how Annie writes. It makes me feel like she’s right on the couch talking to me! I really want to be brave and try again, pursing this dream God has put in my heart. I want to be brave and start.

  56. Q1. As you listened to Annie, Jessica and Angie discussing the first three chapters, did you have an “Ah ha!” moment?

    Have you ever stumbled across a passage when reading that seems to have been written just for you? Was there one specific thing that you needed to read or hear today?

    I think I needed to hear that there are not any subpar Christians. A Christian is a Christian. I liked Annie’s view of it because I think as kids, we do or did have a tendency to think like that. I don’t know who told me or where I heard or came up with this but as a child, I remember believing that God had a clipboard with our names on it and when we were bad, he’d put a red mark next to it. lol It took me forever to get out of that way of thinking.

    Q2. Several times we heard the phrase “Bravery begets bravery” in today’s video. Can you share an example in your own life where someone else’s courage planted a seed for you to be brave?

    How did observing courage in a friend or family member motivate you to be brave?
    I think just stepping out of my comfort zone. I’ve always been willing to travel to new places and new countries and been able to pack up and just go but as I get older, I’m becoming more afraid to do so. I’ve let that stop me sometimes because I’m a single parent and it’s my daughter and me all the time and I’m terrified something will happen to her if we go somewhere together we’ve never gone. I see a lot of my fellow single moms be brave and that gives me the courage to do so as well and step out of my comfort zone.

    Q3. Annie stresses the point that “my” brave doesn’t necessarily look like “your” brave. We want to hear about your brave.

    Jessica asked us to share what brave looks like in our lives–don’t be shy! You never know who will be encouraged by your personal story.

    I think every day is brave for me because I’m raising a 12 year old all alone. I am divorced and he’s not in the picture except when he remembers or feels like he needs to do his “duty”. 12 years old is a hard age and I know it’s going to get harder but we’re a pretty solid team and I try to be strong and courageous for her. She comes from a family of strong women and I want her to be as strong as well. Strong in character and strong in her faith. We were both baptised last February and it was my most proud moment. That she had wanted it for so long and wanted to proclaim it to the world. I learn courage from her. She goes to school everyday even though she can’t stand it and is surrounded by bullies and she does complain and want to stay home but she pushes herself to go and that to me is courageous. I’m not a very social person so me stepping out of my comfort zone and talking to people is my courageous. I do it for her and i do it for me.

  57. I am a risk taker by nature. I jump with not only both feet in, but usually head first. I’m not sure yet what I need to brave about in my life. But, I am trusting God will bring it out of its secret hiding place. God Bless you Ladies. Uniting in Prayer as we journey together:)

  58. I have loved this book so far. I loved how Annie said to not judge people on what their brave is. My brave occurred 6 years ago when our oldest son was diagnosed with cancer at age 2. He underwent nine months of intense treatment. My family and friends helped me be brave the whole time through their support and encouraging comments on our family blog. Now I tried to be brave every day and not worry about what could happen with him in the future- I try to focus on the present and enjoy our four children. This is something I sometimes struggle with. Great book so far!

  59. Thank you Annie for being brave and putting pen to paper! Everyone’s brave is different. What may seem easy to one, will be difficult for another. Praying I can have the grace and mercy to come alongside others and help them charter the waters of their brave moments.

  60. I love the phrase “Bravery begets bravery.” Theses first three chapters have had me thinking over some of the things I’ve gone through in my life and I’ve been like, “ooh, that was brave!” However, at the time I wouldn’t necessarily have thought of it that way. The biggest take away for me is to be looking for the brave in myself and others and encourage and celebrate it, regardless of whether the outcome was what was intended. Just the starting is brave.

  61. I would have to say that what I consider bravery in myself is very different from what someone else would consider my brave to be. Some would say surrendering to be a missionary is brave, I just saw it as obedience. Some would say getting married at 19 is brave, I never saw it like that. Most would say that moving to Alaska from a small town in Nortth Carolina, away from all family and friends,in the middle of December, 7 months pregnant with my first child, and 2 days after the passing of my grandpa is brave, I still never saw the situation like that. I was driven by a thirst to be used by God. But, I think just making this post and participating in this discussion is brave for me. I like to stay in the background, quietly listening and taking everything in, it’s what I’m used to.
    While both my husband and myself were called to be missionaries, he is the one who does the heavy lifting. I am his support, always in the background. Sometimes I even feel guilty. I think, “he is the missionary, I’m just …. Here”. “How am I contributing to this ministry?”. “I should be doing more than this!” So, this is my brave… Opening myself up to others.

  62. pg. 37, “The better you know you, the better you can find that intersection and the better you can resist temptation to sin and wimp out. I know my tendencies and fears, and I also know my gifts and hopes. It’s where those meet that I often find God cheering for me to make the brave choice.”

    All I could think about as I read the first 3 chapters was my desire to start a Children’s Choir in our area. It has been a “some day” dream of mine for many, many years. My children are small, but the time is soon approaching when their ages will better lend to me being able to begin this dream. Yet, I find myself doubting if I can be successful through all of my “tendencies” and weaknesses. On the flip side, when I have the opportunity to stand in front of a group of children (I currently volunteer at my children’s school to teach an after school choir.) I feel alive. I feel complete. I am gifted, even in my weakness, this is what God has asked me to do.

    My grandmother passed away a few days ago. She is my example of bravery. She led an extraordinary life. I was amazed, as I looked at my family at the services, that each and every one of them felt like the most special person in grandma’s life. Her calling in life was to be devoted beyond measure to her family and it wasn’t always easy for her to do so. Yet, at the end of her life, what she is most remembered for, is her absolute fierce loyalty and love for her family. Her gift was love and she shared it. I love her for that. And I want to live my life bravely because of her.

  63. Q1: My “ah ha” moment was when Annie shared her feelings towards an unkind book review – from what I gathered the reviewer didn’t say kind things about the book and went on to say she did not understand how the author (Annie) is brave, or how this book is. Annie pointed out that perhaps the reviewer really missed the point – that we each have our very own brave. What a strong and confident woman she is, to be able to take that review and share it, reflect on it and be okay with it. And to understand that while someone else may not call her brave, she is okay with that and with her own “brave”

    Q2: Bravery begets bravery. My husband and I are very good friends with a couple that moved to the same city as us last year. I recall the very first time I hung out with them after they moved here the wife asked me about our faith, if we go to Church and where, etc. I was raised Christian and my husband was not, he still is not and while we have the utmost respect for each other I find that this is an unexplored conversation between us. The way my (now) girlfriend so openly asked me about our faith at the time was fairly off-putting – as I am not so open. But to this day it has really stuck with me I feel it was quite brave of her to ask and have an open conversation with me about something that I have such a hard time putting into words myself. She inspired me that day, and continues to to this day. She is a large part of why I have ended up reading “Let’s all be Brave” and I often think of her and go to church with her and her family.

    Q3: As can probably be gathered by my previous responses, my brave right now is admitting that perhaps I’ve lost myself a bit along the way in adulthood and that I’d like to explore having God in my life more prevalently, being more open with that and hopefully finding a way to inspire my husband to be okay with this. Perhaps I can help encourage him to open his heart to God someday, but it has to start with me right now.

    Q4: “The better you know you, the better you can find that intersection and the better you can resist temptation to sin or wimp out. I know my tendencies and fears, and I also know my gifts and hopes. It’s where those meet that I often find God cheering for me to make the brave choice”

  64. Q1: As I was reading in chapter 3 about the penalty kicks I wondered if the other girls who were selected for penalty kicks always made them or not? I’m persuaded to believe they weren’t all always successful in making the kick to get the point, but they tried. This is something I have to tell myself all the time – those who are successful at _____________ aren’t always successful and they weren’t as they learned to master that skill. Even professional athletes miss. Why do I judge myself more harshly? Perhaps because of what Annie said on page 34: “I didn’t believe I could mess up and still be loved. I didn’t think I could succeed, but I also didn’t have the courage to fail.” I need to see what it is that lights a fire inside of me as something not to be reached without flaws, but because and with them – because they make the fire more beautiful and real.

    Q2: I once heard a story of an elderly woman who began taking piano lessons. Soon after she was asked to play a piece in church. She declined, but just for the time. She asked for some time to learn a little more before performing. That was graciously given. When the time did come for her performance she stumbled after a few notes. Then she began again and finished. The one telling the story said that her stumbling was encouraging and they all loved her for her effort and were pulling for her success. I love stories of women rooting for the success of other women.

    Q3: My brave looks like taking piano lessons from an exceptional woman whom I admire while I’m at an age when most women in my circumstances are sending their children to lessons – not themselves. But I’m tired of being scared of playing an instrument I love so much. I want to face and learn from and move past my current fears.

    Q4: My favorite quote is on page 35, “I Don’t fear failure because it doesn’t define me. Neither do my successes.” Amen.

  65. Q2 & Q3: My friend Karen, who is also doing this study, was the one who inspired me to be brave & have a conversation with a friend who had hurt me. Now I must say that it was a text conversation (I have not managed to be quite brave enough to continue the convo in person!), but it was a start! And I am thankful for that start.
    Q4: My favorite passage from the first chapter was from PG 19 the last 2 paragraphs about our life being a map & sometimes it feels like the map has turned or we read it wrong… And that it’s MY MAP not anyone elses! It just really spoke to me!♡

  66. I am super late in getting to this but I feel that it is necessary to work through this step by step to find my brave. The easy (nonbrave) thing to do would be to say to myself–I’m so far behind–why even bother? The brave me is not allowing that to happen!
    Q1–My AhHa Moment in the first few chapters/video came in hearing that we need to honor other people’s brave, even if that brave looks different than our brave or we don’t think of it as brave. If I expect support and encouragement for my brave I must also give support and encouragement for other people’s brave.
    Q2–I see fearless people around me all the time and admire them. A specific person would be my ex-husband. While this seems like a silly choice, he exhibits all the personality traits I wish I had. He didn’t have a job but had a skill so he started his own business. He wanted to make more money to support his family so he closed his business and started a new career. It seems like nothing scares him and he has no fear of failing. I also notice that the opinions of others do not affect him. He is happy so he is not worried about other people’s opinion.
    Q3–I’m not sure what my brave looks like right now. I have been in my career for almost 15 years and while I love it, it is not my only passion. I want to explore and discover what those passions might be able to look like in my life. My first brave step needs to be discussing these thoughts with my husband and forming a plan.
    Q4–My favorite quote is on p. 28 “He knows we need dreams in pieces because we would be too scared of the whole puzzle.”