Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Without effort, victory is meaningless

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming, but who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself for a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat."

That is one of my favorite quotes, it popped into my head today and I once again realized how I love being that man in the arena. I love the effort you have to put in as you push for something. For me a battle is almost more fun than a victory and a loss only makes me want to try harder the next time. I know the enthusiasm, the rush, you get when you are devoted to a cause or task that is worthy, it is one of the greatest feelings on earth.

More and more the world is becoming a place of "cold timid souls" who do not understand the thrill of doing something great even if it ends in defeat. The lion chasers are scarce and becoming more so. I know this is a common theme in my "thought" posts and that is probably because it is an ever pressing thought in my mind. How do you show or express to someone the greatness of something if they have never done it and have no desire to? It is a quandary for us humans which has been around since the earth was created.

God loves us, wholly, unconditionally, regardless of the fact that we tend to be ridiculously selfish and sinful beings. He knows what is best for us in our lives and wants us to follow Him, yet so often we don't recognize the amazing potential we could have if we just surrender. We live our lives having never fully surrendered with no real desire to and that causes us to be "cold and timid souls" spiritually. This is going to sound harsh but that is what I feel has happened to a lot of churches today.

There is no more worthy cause than to be enthusiastically dedicated to being a shining light for God in this world. Yet how can churches be so timid about proclaiming the Gospel and Biblical viewpoints in our society? Because they have not experienced the joy and thrill that comes from being in that arena, they would rather sit back with their 501c3 status and build their church membership.

Somehow this post has gone way off topic, all I wanted to do was post the quote and say I love it and somehow it has bounced around to churches building their membership! So I end it now with another quote:

"There is not in all America a more dangerous trait than the deification of mere smartness unaccompanied by any sense of moral responsibility."


  1. Rebecca said...

    That is a really good quote, thanks for posting it!