"I am not afraid. I was born to do this." Joan of Arc
Joan of Arc was only seventeen when she was inspired to take massive action.
Daughter of a poor French farmer, she believed God had chosen her to lead French troops in an ongoing war against England.
Her first step in this unlikely journey was to request a meeting with the man in line to be King of France. Miraculously, she succeeded.
She cut her hair, dressed like a man and went to battle with men.
Even though she successfully led French troops in battle, she eventually faced charges of witchcraft and heresy.
At the age of nineteen, her own countrymen convicted her of dressing like a man and she was burned at the stake.
What must it have taken for her to begin? To answer the call?
Surely, she had her doubts. Her internal dialogue might have gone something like this:
“That’s stupid. I’m going to leave my farm and go request a meeting with the king? Yeah, right! I’m just a girl! They’ll laugh at me and call me crazy! And besides, my family needs me. I can’t just leave them. Who’s going to do my chores?”
She showed tremendous courage when she answered the call.
Certainly she could’ve ignored it or talked herself out of it. She was human, after all.
Few people have that kind of courage. To ignore doubt and say, “I’m not afraid.”
That’s the stuff dreams are made of.
Someone once said: Fear kills more dreams than failure ever will.
Everyone’s afraid of something at one time or another. Fear is normal, and powerful. It can be hard to get past it.
Instead of letting fear paralyze you, shift your focus.
Focus on what you have to gain by taking action, instead of focusing on what you have to lose.
Instead of thinking, “What terrible things might happen?”, consider, “What wonderful things might happen?”
What could you do if you weren’t afraid?
Joan of Arc, a young peasant-girl, in early fifteenth-century France, was inspired by her belief that God was calling her to action.
And she exhibited incredible courage when she answered the call, stepped away from her traditional role, left her family, went to war, faced trial by her own countrymen, and died by fire.
Even after 500 years, her story is incredible and inspiring.
Have a mindset of courage, instead of fear, and you may be surprised at what you can accomplish.
For more information about Joan of Arc, read Britannica.com – Saint Joan of Arc