Sunday’s Sermon: The Power of Perseverance

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I just want everyone to know that after yesterday’s post, I forgot to mention that I need more Grab Bag ideas for this coming week. Make sure you post your ideas for my Saturday post by Saturday morning, and begin your comment with Grab Bag:

Anyway, on to better things…

It will be a year ago in October when I first laid eyes on my workplace. It’s a school. An amazing school. Not because the buildings look brand new and class sizes are small, but because of the attitudes of everyone that I see there. The students, the coworkers, the parents… even those who I don’t know.

Nothing gives me greater pleasure than someone showing me the slightest bit of attention during my day. Whether it be a smile, a hello, or more, people can change my attitude in the blink of an eye. The people I’ve met at my job are exactly like that. They won’t walk past you without some acknowledgement. It’s an amazing thing. Since the school instills these characteristics in the children, the adults are left to set good examples. So we do. And since everyone is working together on this common showing of humanity, we have created a movement within our community that changes everyone’s lives. Now if only the whole world would start acting this way…

But the positive nature of the people who I surround myself with is not even the reason that I mention my job. Instead, it is the fact that we introduce in our students a set of rules and terms to live by to make them act the way that they do. One of the biggest words that we use in our system is perseverance.

I’m not sure what perseverance means to each of you, but to me it simply means never giving up. This, probably the most common definition, is a hard thing to accomplish. To never give up on one thing in life would almost be a miracle. Your opinion of what perseverance means and when someone gives up, also makes the term interpretive to the point that some will say they “gave up” while others who experience the same situation may say they simply “stopped caring” or “moved on to better things.” These sayings are common in our society. But why?

It cannot be a good thing to give up right? Those words linked together to create the saying “give up” have such a negative ring. It is my opinion that people saying give up more often to encourage someone not to do so, rather than to say “I give up!” Those who make that statement often don’t even mean it. During a minute of frustration, I might decide to give up, but I never actually mean that I am completely done trying.

There are many times when I have felt like giving up. Sometimes the situations are job-related, school-related, or even in reference to relationships. Some of these situations are ones in which I know I have given up. When I was in eighth grade my field hockey couch verbally abused me to try to get me to run faster, when it was physically impossible for me. I quit; I didn’t play that season, but I have not regretted it since. After days of being talked down to, I decided I had had enough. No regrets, no more problems. At least when it comes to that situation.

Other situations are different though. Is deciding to change jobs giving up? Or is it simply moving on to bigger and better things? What about school? Does turning in a paper that you feel is less than perfect somewhat count as giving up? Or does it just mean you did your best? I want to know! Leave comments below so that I can learn more about other people’s opinions. Maybe I’ll write more about my experiences of giving up vs. not giving up next time! For now, let me know your opinions and then spend some time analyzing your life and situations in which you may or may not have given up. When you feel like giving up in the future, remember those times, and remember that you can do anything you set your mind to, regardless of what other people say. It may not happen as easily as you want it to, it may not happen when you want it to, but if you try your hardest and stay honest with yourself, giving up will become a thing of your past.

I myself am going to try to stay positive and see if I can too stick with every decision that I make and action that I complete. Hopefully one day I will stop even considering the ability to give up as an option in my life.

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