"Every conquered temptation represents a new fund of moral energy. Every trial endured and weathered in the right spirit makes a soul nobler and stronger than it was before."
~ James Buckham
YOU'RE NOT DONE YET!
Ever noticed how great leaders often come from humble beginnings? From the devastating depths of silence and inability to speak, Helen Keller inspired the world once she had overcome great adversity.
Diagnosed with amyontrophic lateral sclerosis and standing before a full-house crowd in Yankee Stadium on July 4th 1939, Lou Gehrig proclaimed, "I am the luckiest man on the face of the earth! I might have been given a bad break, but I 've got an awful lot to live for." He spent the last two years of his life as Parole Commissioner for New York City, hoping to make a difference in the lives of young people in trouble.
Today, we use more contemporary quotes to explain the same concept. We say, "No pain - no gain!" or, "When the going gets tough, the tough get going." No matter how we verbalize it, it is true that through adversity comes strength.
Think back to the toughest times you've faced during your life. Chances are you'll have to agree that you grew and became a better person for the experience. As for temptations, they are more easily given in to than conquered. Nevertheless, the value system to which you subscribe today probably evolved from temptations overcome.
As Richard Bach put it in his wonderful book "Illusions," "There is no such thing as a problem without a gift for you in its hands. You seek problems because you need their gifts." Whether it be a physical or moral challenge you face, suffer if you must, but look also for its gift. And remember another Richard Bach quote, "Here is a test to find out whether your mission here on earth is finished: If you're alive, it isn't."