September 16     

Today's quotation:

Most of the important things in the world have been achieved by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.

Dale Carnegie

Today's Meditation:

One of the most important things that I've learned in life is that there's always hope.  As Dale says here, the key is to recognize that there only "seems" to be no hope at all.  There is hope, and when we persevere we may take ourselves to the very limits of our ability to see and feel hope, but it's at those very limits that our growth and maturation take place.

It's very easy to talk ourselves into believing that perseverance won't help us out a bit, but that simply is not true.  When we keep on trying we're bound to reach our goals, even if we do reach them much later than we thought or hoped we would.  It's not a question of life rewarding perseverance, for life is impartial to us as individuals, but a question of perseverance allowing us to reach results that seem to be out of our reach.

"The important things in the world" don't have to be earth-shattering discoveries or inventions.  They can be simple things that help your family or neighbors to feel better about themselves, programs that can provide needed meals to people in your community, ideas that can raise money for a needy charity in your town.  But they rarely are achieved through quick acts or spur-of-the-moment ideas.  In order to bring them to fruition, we have to commit ourselves to a course of action, one that will take more time than we might imagine at first.

Persistence is simply a willingness to keep working towards a goal despite a seeming lack of results.  And persistence is one of the most important elements of a life of contribution-- it's our decision to persist, and that decision is all that stands between our success and our giving up hope.  But hope never gives up on us, so let's not give up on hope.

Questions to consider:

In what areas have you been most persistent in your life?  What kinds of results have you seen?  What kinds do you foresee?

What kinds of setbacks or results may make us give up hope?

What can help us to keep on going when we see no hope?

For further thought:

When you put your hand to the plow, you can't put it down until you get to the end of the row.

Alice Paul

more thoughts and ideas on perseverance



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