Redefining Courage

Extreme Mouse

This Life Takes Redefining Courage.

I met an older gentleman, Mr. Russell Stubbs, on one of my four flights this past weekend.  He was 40 years my senior.  I thoroughly enjoyed our conversation as Mr. Stubbs shared stories of his family with me.  He was married 51 years but knew his bride since the 6th grade.  They raised their children together, and those children gave him five grandsons.  All five grandsons still call and text their grandfather almost every day.  One of his grandsons asked him to pin his stripes on him during an honorary ceremony for the Air Force.  Another researched and had his grandfather ordained, just so he could have his granddad marry him and his new bride.  When this Grandfather sends a text message to these five grown men, they almost always text him back within 15 minutes.

Family, through all the ebbs and flow of life, is still one of the most powerful forces.

Mr. and Mrs. Stubbs had emotional presence and stay power.  They walked life’s journey together, through the sunshine and the storms.  Mrs. Stubbs went to heaven 5 1/2 years ago, and Russell shares what he still believes to be most valuable.  What does Russell share about his life?   He shares the true successes – the years with his wife, his kids, and now his grandkids.  Very little was said about the things they accumulated and the achievements it took to gain those things.  No.  What Mr. Stubbs smiles at today is his true treasures, a legacy of what’s real and lasting – his family.

With all the redefining of words that’s going on in our nation today, let me be so bold to redefine a word.  Courage.

Bungee jumping.  Speedboat racing.  Running with the bulls.  Or, business, business, business.  They may all take some form of courage, but being risky is not always courageous.  Staying is courage.  Being present both physically and emotionally takes more courage than any free-fall sky diving, or extreme sport that catapults you miles above any solid foundation.

Be it physical or emotional anybody can run, but few can stay.

“They walked life’s journey together, through the sunshine and the storms.”  Stay Power.  Now that’s extreme.  That’s courageous!

Old Couple Holding Hands

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The Definition of Courage: Merriam Webster Dictionary  

The ability to do something that you know is difficult or dangerous –  Mental or moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear, or difficulty.

Example – “Sometimes when I debate whether to risk my individuality or conform, the memory of my son’s picture brings me courage.” —Sue Monk Kidd, Reader’s Digest, August 1990

I may not need to redefine the word courage, just be reminded what it already means.  Thank you Mr. Stubbs for your reminder!