Friday, April 23, 2010

Be in the Arena--homage to Teddy

One hundred years ago today, President Theodore Roosevelt made his famous "Man in the Arena" speech in Paris. His words ring true with me.

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.

 I want to be a man in the arena.  I want to stand in the center of the arena like Spartacus or like Spaniard . I read that Nelson Mandela gave a copy of this speech to Francois Pienaar, South Africa's National Rugby captain. Although they use Invictus as the poem for the movie , Mr. Mandela copied it for Francois to read. I believe it is inspiring as a follower of Christ.  Many will oppose or critique my devotion to God.  Nevertheless, I will choose to follow Christ! 

Likewise, Joshua challenged the people of Israel in his day. "Choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve...But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord (Joshua 24:15)." I wonder what inspires you to follow God with greater devotion everyday. 

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