March 19, 2013 | 10:59 am
Posted by Former WECC Minister Rev. Michael Bos

The Courage to Be

You probably haven’t heard of the “Vulnerability Prayer,” which is simple little prayer that says, “God, give me the courage to show up and let myself be seen.” I discovered this prayer in Brene Brown’s book, Daring Greatly. These simple words ask God to help us summon the courage to put ourselves out there and take a few risks, which isn’t always easy to do.

If you’re feeling fearful of “showing up and letting yourself be seen,” take some time this week to ponder an excerpt from Teddy Roosevelt’s speech, “Citizenship in a Republic.” (Roosevelt was a member of our denomination, the Reformed Church in America.) These are the words that gave Brown the courage to pray the Vulnerability Prayer and to “dare greatly.”

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”