This post begins with OVERCOMING FEAR: THE COURAGE TO BECOME A HERO (PART 1)
We all want and need heroes. And we can all become heroes. But JFK was certainly correct when he advised of would be heroes: “Efforts and courage are not enough without purpose and direction.”
But if you know your purpose and Live with direction, courage is often nothing more than the power and testicular fortitude to say “No.” J. K. Rowling hit it right on the mark with: “It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.”
“It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.” – J.K. Rowling
Sometimes it takes a great deal more courage to stand opposed to our friends. And sometimes that is what a Real Man is called upon to do.
And the rewards are incredible. According to Morihei Ueshiba: “Loyalty and devotion lead to bravery. Bravery leads to the spirit of self-sacrifice. The spirit of self-sacrifice creates trust in the power of Love.”
No matter what, though, we have One Friend we need never stand up to, we have One Friendship that will always be completely in our corner, and fully backing us.
And NOT just when we ‘are good.’ When we fail. When we fail miserably. When we sin in the worst and most despicable way. When our friends desert us and our problems appear insurmountable. When everything in our world seems dark, and when all other lights seem to have failed.
Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand. – Isaiah 41:10 NAS
I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand. – Isaiah 41:10 NAS
“Courage is being scared to death… and saddling up anyway.” – John Wayne
Haile Selassie said, “We must become bigger than we have been: more courageous, greater in spirit, larger in outlook. We must become members of a new race, overcoming petty prejudice, owing our ultimate allegiance not to nations but to our fellow men within the human community.”
The prophet, Isaiah, offers this on courage: ‘Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.’ – Isaiah 41:10 NLT
There is no higher praise a man can receive than being labeled courageous. There is no moniker evidencing greater disdain than calling a man a “coward.” In most tribal cultures courage, for men at least, courage is the only characteristic measured in determining one’s place in society.
A man who possesses an abundance of courage will be forgiven a host of other shortcomings, but it is difficult to appreciate any other quality in a man who lacks courage.
“Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can’t be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest.”, as Maya Angelou astutely penned.
“Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency” – Maya Angelou
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. – Isaiah 41:10 NIV
According to Winston Churchill, “Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.” Indeed, courage is multi-faceted in the way it manifests itself. It can be seen in one who faces death or destruction bravely. It is witnessed in the character of one who is unwilling to sway her opinion in the face of peer pressure or government or religious coercion. It may be seen in the soldier charging a machine gun nest to save his buddies, but is no less valid when it is a man deciding to become the unshakable emotional fortress for his family — when life becomes complicated and troubles abound at home.