Character and Honor

There are a few moments in life that you have to realize you’re making a decision that affect your “forever.”  I thought about that idea as I prepared to write this blog today in an unexpected way…I watched a movie as I was folding the family laundry, taking a break from working on my novel.  I’ve written lately about regret, apology, self esteem and love – and when I consider my own life over the past year, I have to boil all that I know and all that I believe as a person of faith into something that I heard from a man that I haven’t met.  Michael Oher is the man who, based on his interpretation of the Battle of the 600, inspired my thoughts with his high school essay that reads:

Courage is a hard thing to figure. You can have courage based on a dumb idea or a mistake, but you’re not supposed to question adults, or your coach, or your teacher because they make the rules. Maybe they know best but maybe they don’t. It all depends on who you are, where you come from. Didn’t at least one of the six hundred guys think about giving up and joining with the other side? I mean, Valley of Death, that’s pretty salty stuff. That’s why courage is tricky. Should you always do what others tell you to do? Sometimes you might not even know why you’re doing something. I mean, any fool can have courage. But honor, that’s the real reason you either do something or you don’t. It’s who you want to be. If you die trying for something important then you have both honor and courage and that’s pretty good. I think that’s what the writer was saying; that you should try for courage and hope for honor. And maybe even pray that the people telling you what to do have some, too.”

I’ve spent so much time lately in counseling, giving counseling, taking tests, taking classes, listening and learning that before one more thought comes my way I want to center on this idea of courage, and facing the future.  If you die trying for something important, then you have both honor and courage. What about living for these values, living for these concepts in faith and truth?  I value both so highly, honor and courage.  I seek to model and profess both, and admire people that seem to model them as well.  Faith that is preceded and borne of grace.  Honor to meet even the ugliest of circumstance with the beauty of the human spirit.  Courage to know when and how to start again.

Is honor is the real reason that you do something or not – doing “the right thing?”  Is it love that drives you, knowledge or faith?  People might differ from context to context, but honor is a word that has traveled well through the centuries from the ancients until now without losing it’s meaning.  It may have lost a few devotees, but not it’s way.

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