B. Keith Chapman, President & CEO
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston S. Churchill
My favorite character in the childhood movie The Wizard of Oz is the Cowardly Lion. The lion’s comical mannerisms, humor, and struggle to be brave make his character entertaining. However, this character portrays some real-life struggles that people experience every day. The lion is equipped with the size, strength, and capability to be courageous. However, his lack of courage and fear of everything have completely hindered his ability to be successful in his role as King of the Jungle. Many people struggle with similar emotions. Lack of confidence in our ability, wavering level of commitment, and fear of failure have stifled our forward progress and limited our success.
As Winston Churchill said so eloquently, “Success is not final, failure is not fatal…” I would also add that neither has a guarantee. Just because you experience success with one project or decision does not mean that you will automatically continue to experience success. Likewise, failing does not commit you to a life of failure. A successful journey will require courage to step into your full potential, overcome fear and continue through the setbacks. The courage to continue is what matters the most.
Have you ever witnessed someone conquer a fear? Whether it be the fear of public speaking, heights, rejection, or something else, the process for overcoming each is similar. First, there has to be a determination to overcome the fear. The battle between courage and fear will always play in our mind. This battle is real and can have profound impacts on our daily life. Second, there has to be a deliberate action. At some point in the battle, you have to make a move. Over-analyzing and strategizing only leads to stagnation. Third, repetition will always build confidence and help with the elimination of the fear. The fact is, things get easier with repetition.
Isaiah 41:13 says, “For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear, I will help you.” Notice the only directive in this passage, is “Do not fear.” Fear is a powerful emotion that can completely incapacitate people. Courage is the opposing force to overcome fear and build confidence. This passage paints a profound picture of our Creator taking us by the hand and helping us through life. Be comforted in knowing that someone much more capable and powerful than us is willing and able to step in and help. No matter the size of your battle, let your courage be strengthened by knowing that you are loved by God.
Challenge: Be courageous in the journey of life. Remain determined to conquer fear, take action when needed and repeat until things are easier. Remember, it is the courage to continue that counts.
Published: March 1, 2019