Monday, February 6, 2012

Valiant Stair-step Strives...

It is not the critic who counts,
not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled,
or where the doer of deeds could have done them 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 short again and again;
who knows the great enthusiasms,
the great devotions,
and spends himself in a worthy cause;
who, at the best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement;
and who at the worst, at least fails while daring greatly,
so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.

- Theodore (Teddy) Roosevelt

Simply, and with great hearts of dedication, all across our country (and other countries) former excellent executives are clicking computer keys - letter by letter - working hard to sharpen their technology skills. Hands that long ago worked hard to move up steps to well-earned supervision placement, have returned to once again feel the deep ache and notable satisfaction of manual labor; only now their bodies have grown older (yet they have found a strength they had not realized still remained). Former outstanding managers, who treated others with profound respect, have cultivated an even greater skill of respectfulness as they have endured the scrutiny of interview evaluations, or even the emptiness of no response. The now-common term "homeless" has spread a wide net in unthinkable ways; yet, it has also more clearly and graciously redefined what "home" is really about. 

As Teddy Roosevelt so succinctly points out, the steps to recovery exist in each dedicated individual who remains in the arena - no matter how small an action. Each time we click a computer key to learn new skills, or endure another interview or rejection, or revisit work that we thought we had grown beyond, we cultivate remarkable grace and fortitude for our futures. And home is what lives within each of us - we can choose to say: "My home is right here within me in the form of love and comfort I give out to others." 

And all of those precious whispered vows and promises to "carry on" are becoming the stair-steps to a greatness that is just beginning to unfold... I have hope. I hope you do, too...

(The stair-steps in the photo were taken at the Santa Barbara Mission - those steps have marked time and the perseverance of many - most prominently the Franciscan Friars - since the early 1800s... something to think about...)


Anyes said...

...home is what lives within us...simple truth so easy to forget especially in today's economy.

Red Rose Alley said...

Wonderful story, Karen. I went to the Santa Barbara Mission over 30 years ago, and at the time, my husband's uncle was a Franciscan brother there. It is a beautiful place, and so is your picture of the stairs.
~Sheri at Red Rose Alley

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I have always been inspired by my Grandfather's particular generosity and encouragement, along with his love for others and nature. His spirit lives on, and the influence is quietly with me as I write and share. This is my small offering that I pray will bless others and allow them to become Simply Inspired. warmly, karen -xok.
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