Eleazar "died, leaving in his death a model of courage" (2 Mc 6:31). "Most admirable and worthy of everlasting remembrance was the mother, who saw her seven sons perish in a single day, yet bore it courageously" (2 Mc 7:20). These acts of courage, as great as they were, were only intimations of the greatest act of courage: Jesus' death on the cross.
As Jesus' disciples, we have followed in our Master's footsteps. We have been renowned for two thousand years for our acts of great courage. We have courageously "endured mockery, scourging, even chains and imprisonment" (Heb 11:36). We have become martyrs, virgins, missionaries, and pastors — risking and giving our lives courageously for the gospel of Jesus. We Christians are a people of courage.
Are you courageous? Do you have the courage to speak publicly of your love for God? Will you courageously let God plan your family? Do you have the courage and love to call sin "sin"? Do you refuse to be intimidated by the pressures of our secular humanistic "culture of death"? Are you a chicken or a Christian?
Let us pray for each other that the Holy Spirit may give us the courage to proclaim Jesus and the gospel as we ought (Eph 6:20).