"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 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, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in 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 fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat."
This powerful speech was written over a hundred years ago, by Theodore Roosevelt. It was written as a rebuttal against the ones that were critical of individuals who were trying to make the world a better place.
Hmmm ...Has anything changed much in a hundred years, well it is for you to decide.
I was introduced to it when my daughter was a competitive skater. As parents we would encourage her with this quote when she would fall on the ice in the arena in front of a panel of judges and get up again and again. It was a powerful image to me about tenacity and never giving up in front of the critics.
As they say "When the going gets tough the tough get going".
It is an encouragement to all of us when we are faced with challenges in life and when it feels like the critics outweigh the blessers. It is a reminder that you are not alone and that many have gone before you in the battle for good.
In my view these words say it best:
"You cannot love a thing without wanting to fight for it."
Quote by Gilbert K Chesterton
And also this one:
"In the absence of love, there is nothing worth fighting for."
Wow how true!
Love is the force that fuels our battles, Love for family, Love for God,
Love for His ways. A love for freedom and all it encompasses.
I believe these are causes worth fighting for and.
.....worth getting back up for again and again and again.
Perhaps these verses from a song called "The words I would say"
by Sidewalk Prophets, can fill us with courage to get up in the arena of life:
"Be strong in the Lord and,
Never give up hope,
You're going to do great things,
I already know,
God's got His hand on you so,
Don't live life in fear,
Forgive and forget,
But don't forget why you're here,
Take your time and pray,
These are the words I would say."
And finally in the words of the apostle Paul:
"And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not." Galatians 6:9
"Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful." Hebrews 10:23