27 November, 2009

Celebrating Our Heroes and Other Stories of Success

While visiting at the Thanksgiving table last night after dinner, the subject of the Great Depression arose.  A few attendees had been alive during that era and gave some of their accounts of what times where like back then.  One comment struck me in particular.  The individual was speaking of the hardships faced by people then and the strength – both physically and that of character that it required for many (or, arguably most) to survive those times.

Then, before retiring to bed last night I watched NBC’s “People of the Year” with Matt Lauer.  I was moved by the very first interview with Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger who piloted the US Airways “Miracle on the Hudson”
landing that saved the lives of everyone on board.  I listened to how he said his life had changed and how he had become more secure in his own skin.

I then listened to the interview with Captain Richard Phillips whose boat had come under attack by pirates off the rugged Horn of Africa.  Captain Phillips ended up being kidnapped by the pirates but was credited with saving his boat and the lives of his crew.  The U.S. military came to his aid and freed him to return home.

I was moved by both of these stories and I suddenly realized why we love to hear the stories of heroes and why we love to hear the stories of those, like Susan Boyle and Taylor Swift, who have brought us so much joy with their music and whose dreams have come true for them.  We love to hear these stories because they represent the human spirit and of what we are capable.  They represent the resiliency of the human spirit and stand as testament to the abilities that we all have within.

The thrust we have to survive, the strength and courage that shine through when necessary, and the drive to succeed and prevail – achieving our dreams, celebrate that of which we are all capable.  These stories represent what’s possible for anyone who has a dream to achieve.  They represent the pinnacle of the human spirit – a drive to always succeed, a steadfastness in times of trouble, and an enduring hope that our circumstances will only get better.

It matters not if your aspirations are considered big or small.  They all live in the realm of the possible if you dare to keep them in your heart and dreams.  I believe in a God who is for us all, who wants us to succeed, and who gives to us every good thing, withholding nothing.  And, I continually see the evidence for this when I look at my life and the lives of others.  There is no thing that is out of our reach or that is too big for any of us to handle.
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