Tag Archives: courage

We must free ourselves

“We must free ourselves of the hope that the sea will ever rest.  We must learn to sail in high winds.” — Aristotle Onassis Whatever else might be said of Aristotle Onassis, he certainly learned to make the most of adverse circumstances.  His family’s experiences could have led him into poverty.  Instead he became one …

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Your message

“If you want to get your message across, shut up.” — Mardy Grothe I don’t take this advice nearly as often as I ought to, but today, I get it.  I schedule these posts about two weeks in advance, so I have no idea how I’ll be feeling when this post is published.  But right …

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The people weeping

There is sobbing of the strong, And a pall upon the land; But the People in their weeping Bare the iron hand: Beware the People weeping When they bare the iron hand. — Herman Melville Almost all of us who are old enough to remember September 11, 2001, can describe where we were and what …

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For this I was born

“I do not fear the soldiers, for my road is made open to me; and if the soldiers come, I have God, my Lord, who will know how to clear the route that leads to the Dauphin. It was for this that I was born!” — Joan of Arc “If Joan of Arc could turn the …

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Estimating our limits

“How many ships didn’t sail because of the belief that the earth was flat? How much progress was impeded because man wasn’t supposed to breathe underwater, fly through the air, or venture into outer space? Historically, we’ve done a remarkably poor job of estimating our limits.” — Gary Keller Okay, so the skeptical cynic in …

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Higher ground

My heart has no desire to stay where doubts arise and fears dismay. Though some may dwell where these abound, My prayer, my aim is higher ground.  –Johnson Oatman, Jr. Growing up in a church where a cappella singing was a vital part of every worship, I was exposed early and often to verses that …

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Ultimately worthwhile

“Anything I’ve ever done that ultimately was worthwhile…initially scared me to death.” — Betty Bender In most ways I’m a cautious person, riddled with anxieties about all sorts of things, but some people get a false impression that I am bold or daring.  I think this is because certain traits that run strongly in me …

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Achieved, not bestowed

“In the truest sense, freedom cannot be bestowed; it must be achieved.” —Franklin D. Roosevelt We often speak of freedom being granted, as if it is something given.  While it’s appropriate to view our freedom as a gift, it is also a quality that has to come from within.  We can become the willing slaves of …

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The torch of freedom

“The stature of our homeland is no more than the measure of ourselves. Our job is to keep her free. Our will is to keep the torch of freedom burning for all. To this solemn purpose we call on the young, the brave, the strong, and the free.” — John Paul Jones Many of us …

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Through all the gloom

“I am well aware of the toil and blood and treasure that it will cost to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these States. Yet through all  the gloom I can see the rays of ravishing light and glory. I can see that the end is worth more than all the means; that posterity …

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Blinking once-sealed eyes

“I do not know what I am doing. But just like a baby bird, I am blinking once-sealed eyes and unfolding damp wings.” —Julie Gregory No matter how old we grow, life forces us to keep learning.  Sometimes it helps to re-frame even the most difficult experiences as opportunities to increase our competence, tenacity or …

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Security or opportunity?

“There is no security on this earth.  Only opportunity.”  — General Douglas MacArthur “Too many people are thinking of security instead of opportunity; they seem more afraid of life than of death.” — James F. Byrnes There’s nothing like watching or reading the news to create feelings of insecurity.  Violence erupts all over the globe, …

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The world would kick the beam

“If the whole world were put into one scale, and my mother in the other, the whole world would kick the beam.”  — Henry Bickersteth, Lord Langdale Even after I became a mother, I have never liked Mother’s Day.  It seems to me an artificially contrived and ultimately inadequate invention designed primarily to sell cards and …

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The day of liberation

“So now, muster your strength, and don’t lose heart. We shall all see the day of liberation. Have faith in life. Above all else, have faith. Drive out despair, and you will keep death away from yourselves…The same smoke floats over all our heads. Help one another. It is the only way to survive.” — …

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Fishermen know

“The fishermen know that the sea is dangerous and the storm terrible, but they have never found these dangers sufficient reason for remaining ashore.” — Vincent Van Gogh Fishermen are among many who labor at occupations fraught with potential hazards, but our lives and well being depend on workers who understand that benefits often outweigh risks.  …

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To all of you

“I want to say to all of you that are reading this right now: You are not allowed to lose hope, because maybe a miracle will happen. DO NOT LOSE HOPE.” — Malka Chana Roth We interrupt these re-runs to bring you a new real time post. I started this blog seven and a half …

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The size of the fight

“It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog.” — Mark Twain Our animal friends teach us many valuable lessons, but the trait I admire most in our little Schipperke, Pasha, is his fearless zest for life.  He apparently has never encountered a situation in which caution …

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Yonder lies the way

“The hour is ripe, and yonder lies the way.” — Virgil In most ways I’m a cautious person.  I tend to fall into what a friend once described as “paralysis by analysis,” so fearful of making a mistake that I think and re-think decisions far too long.  This blog, however, was an exception that could …

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Not a harbor

“The past is a lighthouse, not a harbor.” — origin unknown Change can be difficult even for those of us who crave novelty.  It’s especially frightening when we are brought face-to-face with our own mortality, or that of someone we love.  If we have been blessed with happy memories to treasure, letting go can be …

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Always a frontier

“Where there is an open mind there will always be a frontier.” — Charles F. Kettering I admire the courage of those who venture into new territory.  From the explorers of ancient times up through the astronauts of today, we have always needed trailblazers who are willing to lead the way into an unknown future.  …

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The quiet voice

“Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day, saying, ‘I will try again tomorrow.’”  — Mary Ann Radmacher Enthusiasm and motivation are wonderful, but can backfire on us if we rush in with good intentions and expect too much of ourselves when tackling a new project or difficult resolution.  …

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Come celebrate

…come celebrate with me that everyday something has tried to kill me and has failed.                  —Lucille Clifton Some weeks it’s easier than others to write a post appropriate for a blog titled Defeat Despair. This has been one of the more difficult weeks. I had Clifton’s brief …

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The best people

“The best people possess a feeling for beauty, the courage to take risks, the discipline to tell the truth, the capacity for sacrifice. Ironically, their virtues make them vulnerable; they are often wounded, sometimes destroyed.” — Ernest Hemingway Hemingway saw more than his share of wounds and destruction. As a young ambulance driver he was …

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Heroes who live among us

“There are two kinds of heroes. Heroes who shine in the face of great adversity, who perform an amazing feat in a difficult situation. And heroes who live among us, who do their work unceremoniously, unnoticed by many of us, but who make a difference in the lives of others.” —Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono Yesterday was …

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All serious daring

“A sheltered life can be a daring life as well. For all serious daring starts from within.” — Eudora Welty By most standards, I have lived a very sheltered life. I don’t regret it. I’ve had a lot of interesting experiences, traveled widely and read extensively, but I also have had the luxury of being …

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