Courage Under Fire | By Jamie Warner
Hero. A label that is thrown around current American culture with so much reckless abandon that we threaten diluting the term to the point of obsolescence. After all, what makes one a hero? Well, according to dictionary.com, a hero is a person noted for courageous acts or nobility of character.
Courageous acts. Well then, what exactly is courage? A word study reveals courage is mental or moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear, or difficulty. There are two types of courage: physical and moral.
Very few would argue against the premise that our nation’s Warriors: veterans, active duty military personnel, and first responders embody physical courage. There are innumerable examples of their heroic exploits.
Something happens when a man or woman dons their uniform. The uniform represents countless hours of training and preparation, trust in and commitment to the men and women on their left and their right in the fight, and a sense of purpose and service that pours forth from their veins so fully that they reek of purpose, service, and determination. Most Warriors run directly towards the sound of danger rather than retreating from it.
Many would describe them as fearless.
Really? Fearless? I think not. Have you ever been in a life-threatening situation? Imagine standing on a battlefield, bombs detonating, rockets exploding, enemy forces engaging you, or someone pointing a gun at you with the intent to kill you or running headlong into a burning building to save someone? In those situations, there is not an absence of fear. It would be only natural to be fearful. But what makes one a hero in those circumstances isn’t being fearless but moving forward into the fray regardless of one’s fears. I heard that the late actor John Wayne said, “Courage is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway.” It’s that strength to venture into, persevere through, and withstand the danger. That’s physical courage.
The trauma incurred from these acts of physical courage is the reason so many seek the Legacy Program. We often say at the start of a Legacy Program that the hardest part is just showing up. Why is that so difficult for so many? Because of the realization that Legacy Program doesn’t test your physical courage, it challenges your moral fortitude.
Look at the second half of the definition of a hero: nobility of character. Another way to describe nobility of character is moral courage. Moral courage is the strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear, or difficulty in the defense of one’s morals or convictions. Standing up for what you believe to be right or true, regardless of personal cost.
Do you have the courage to run back into the struggles that you’ve left in your wake or will you let fear, the lies of the enemy, stop you?
Remember 2 Timothy 1:7 says, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” Will you have the moral courage to confront the destruction you’ve caused with the ones who matter most to you? Becoming, and living as an authentic man of God is not for the fainthearted or the weak. It takes both physical and moral courage. It requires heroic effort. And at Mighty Oaks, we don’t let you fight that fight alone. We come along side as brother-in-arms to support and encourage one another.
The Warriors that attended last week’s Men’s Legacy Program at SkyRose Ranch in California courageously confronted their most difficult issues in life and are pressing on despite any fears or reservations as Godly, heroic men of noble character. The fight is far from over, but they move forward God’s promise of Joshua 1:9,
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.
(If there is any chance you may be battling with PTSD, please click here to be taken to our application page. We are here for you.)