I thought it would be fun to get a few of my friends to tell you their story of courage. So randomly throughout this month, you will be hearing from some of the brave ones nearest and dearest to me.

Marie-Claire grew up as a missionary in France and is now in graduate school in Waco, Texas. I skipped a few details there, but now you are caught up. 🙂 Her nickname is Rooster McDooj. Feel free to call her that.

Marie, the floor is yours. Take it away.

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God recently brought me to a new place. Now when I say, “God brought me,” I don’t mean that I searched high and low for a chance to come here, and I finally found the secret door of opportunity that God had hidden for me, picked the lock, and forced it open.

Instead, it was more of a double-doors-swinging-open-with-golden-beams-shining-down sort of thing, complete with an angelic chorus beckoning me to walk through.

There were scholarships I received but hadn’t applied for, a job offered to me that I didn’t know existed, and a church with an amazing reputation just down the street. I felt very strongly that I was supposed to go.

Yet on the day I arrived, I was lonely. I didn’t know anything about this place, and wanted to be somewhere familiar, with restaurants I knew I liked and Targets I knew how to get to. Mostly, I wished for the community of friends I had just distanced myself from. I didn’t feel brave at all.

Instead of being excited about a new school in a different part of the country, I was worried that I would never find my place here. Instead of remembering all of the blessings the Lord had lavished upon me and the innumerable times he had come through for me, I chose to sulk and point out to God that he could have at least made me go to a state that didn’t require two days of driving to get here.

Why do I feel like this? Is grad school supposed to be this challenging? Did I walk through someone else’s double doors? Doubtful prayers drifted from my heart for the first few days. Nothing dramatically changed over the next few weeks, and I really started to worry.

If my life were a chick flick, this would be the point in the story when I meet a funny redhead in the library who becomes by best friend and introduces me to her brother, a young lawyer, which leads to all sorts of romance and humor and no loneliness whatsoever.

I know deep down that God is sovereign, and proud of me for having the guts to move out here, and has a concrete plan and reason for me being here. But the reality is that I still feel lonely sometimes. I haven’t made any close friends, and I haven’t met a single (single) lawyer.

But God didn’t bring me here to be comfortable. He brought me because it’s in both of our best interests””His glory and my holiness. And part of becoming holy is, as Oswald Chambers put it, “investing your faith in the character of God.”

So I’m still here. And though I’m not comfortable, I’m confident in God’s guidance and follow-through.

“I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.”  –Philippians 1:19-21

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Ok, friends. Here’s the question for you to answer in the comments- how do you choose courage even when it makes you lonely? Have you ever struggled like Rooster McDooj is struggling?

[PS- I’m gonna answer in the comments, too.]

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Who I’m reading: Mr. Gary’s 31 Days of Scary Hope. He’s Nester and Emily’s dad and he’s way smart and funny and an amazing writer. Check his series out!