Joshua 1:9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”
This verse caught my attention the other day. One of several times in a row Joshua gets told to be couragoeus.
But what caught my attention first was the word discouraged. Discouraged is a good word.
Ok, well, really it usually isn’t a good thing. But as a word, it’s useful. I found myself noticing how many times I’ve used other words to try and replace it… disappointed, frustrated, depressed, hopeless, annoyed…. but really… sometimes what it ought to be called is just that. Discouraged.
So after this though, I ran into the word courageous once again. And I couldn’t help but notice the similarity… half the word is the same.
I’m not an english teacher…. and I know just enough about using greek references in strongs to make myself look like a doof…. but same base of a word to me usually means a relation.
So maybe courageous is when you have what you lack when you are discouraged? Would make sense.
And what is that? Well, I’m gonna look at the word and say its courage. But then, courage is another word I don’t use much. To me, it basically has the same meaning as bravery (using it as a noun).
The next day I went to a prayer meeting, and someone had randomly used the word encourage. Ah ha! More courage based words… this totally sidetracked my thoughts for like half an hour.
Discourage, encourage…. easily enough opposites. And words I understand fairly well. One takes away, one adds… but what is it that they add or take away?
Again, looking at the words, I’m going to say courage. But that’s not the way I use the word courage. Though, it’s hard for me to put into words what it is that they effect…. outlook? positive feeling? mood? hope?
Passion i suppose comes the closest. Discouragement being a drop in passion from a disappointment… encouragement being an increase in passion from, well, an encouragement.
But if you take that word passion, and you take it back over to the word courageous…. it seems to work well there as well. The courageous warrior is usually the one so passionate about whatever hes fighting for that it pushing him on.
Maybe I misunderstand courage. Maybe its not so much the bravery (that you don’t have the fear)…. maybe its actually the passion of your cause outweighing the fear.
Not a clue if there is any linguistic basis for this. But it makes the verse a bit more meaningful to me. I suck at being brave… and even at pretending to be. But passion? That I can work with.