Tangela - Spartanburg, South Carolina
Entered on September 29, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
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This I Believe: Courage

I believe courage is one of the strongest qualities that a person can have. Those hardworking individuals who strive to do their best everyday this is courage. The individuals who try to be better than they were the day before, that’s courage. Courage is not just facing your fears; courage is having the strength to go through them.

I can remember sitting, on the couch talking with my grandfather one evening. He was telling me some of the experiences he faced during World War II. He told me that there were times he felt as if he could not take seeing another one of his army, battle buddies die. He told me there were days he could have gave up and ran to a place where he would be safe, and out of harm’s way. I would sit and wonder how he overcame situations such as these, but then he told me that he looked at himself and realized that the war was bigger than him. There was a greater cause to what he was fighting for. He told me it took courage, to get up from his wet sleeping bag that he laid out on the hard cold ground just so he could continue to fight. The veterans from WWII, and any of the wars that we have encountered had to have courage, will power, determination, and they had to work together as a team. My grandfather said that his whole experience brought out the best in him, after facing the obstacles of war; he had the faith and ability to face anything. To me he is one of the living examples of the definition of courage.

Courage has been exemplified throughout our history. Beginning with Adam and Eve, George Washington, Rosa Parks to now Barack Obama. They all display a certain amount of courage. It took courage, strength, hard work, and commitment to overcome the obstacles that they were faced with. Adam and Eve had to have courage to face God after tasting of the tree of knowledge. We know that they were afraid of what was to happen to them because they ran and hid from the Lord. It took courage to face their situation head on not knowing that their mistake would turn out to be a blessing. They didn’t know everything would work out at the end, but they faced their fears together and persevered. George Washington, a general in the army had no background experience in politics. He was elected president because of his strong will, honesty and courage to fight battles that looked as if they were impossible to overcome. He was afraid to take the position because he had no prior knowledge of political duties. But he used his courage to fulfill his duties, and turned out to be one of the greatest presidents that America has ever had. Rosa Parks, one of the most well known civil rights activists in history. Parks didn’t give up her seat when she was told to do so. She knew there would be consequences to her actions, but her courage carried her through the difficult challenges that faced her. If we could go back in time and seen her deny the request that was put before her, we would say she was bold, or she was crazy. And it could have been both that she was a bold, crazy lady, but it was her faith, and her courage that changed the way of life.