“Courage is not the absence of fear but the acquired ability to move beyond fear.” ~Matthew Kelly
No one is born courageous. As Matthew points out, courage is something we acquire that allows us to “move beyond fear.”
There are endless examples of courage throughout history. Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Sophie Scholl, and Anne Frank standing up to the Nazi regime; the use of non-violent protest by Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr. to stand against oppression; Leonardo da Vinci, Socrates, and Galileo standing up for their beliefs; Nelson Mandela standing against apartheid and undoubtedly, the most famous example of all was Jesus Christ, who suffered death to spread his message of spiritual truth. Every single one of these individuals had to overcome fear to demonstrate the courage they held within.
When we realize that courage is not something we are born with, and that it is available to each of us, we become empowered. As we gain courage within, fear begins to lose its power over us, and our focus shifts to new perspectives on life and what is truly important and of value to us.
There will be times in our lives in which we are faced with disappointment, pain, and suffering. Fear will try to take over our hearts and minds, and may succeed if we let it. But if we can focus on the value of life and appreciate the beauty that exists even in those times of pain, we will have discovered how to overcome our fears in life… something that can make a world of difference in how we experience the world around us.
Do not allow fear to control how you experience life today.
Questions to consider:
What kinds of pain or difficulties do you spend most of your time trying to avoid?
How often are you successful in avoiding them?
How aware are you of your moments of happiness and positive thoughts?
For further thought:
“Courage begins when we can admit that there is no life without some pain, some frustration; that there is no tragic accident to which we are immune; and that beyond the normal exercise of prudence we can do nothing about it. But courage goes on to see that the triumph of life is not in pains avoided, but in joys lived completely in the moment of their happening. Courage lies in never taking so much as a good meal or a day of health and fair weather for granted. It lies in learning to be aware of our moments of happiness as sharply as our moments of pain. We need not be afraid to weep when we have cause to weep, so long as we can really rejoice at every cause for rejoicing.” ~Victoria Lincoln