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Monday, August 17, 2015

Alice Mackenzie Swaim

Strength often comes from unexpected places.  We sometimes misjudge people when we only look at the outside.  Inside is what counts.  Have you ever met someone who you liked instantly only to find out he was not the person you thought he was?  Have you ever met a person who you thought was rude and uncaring only to discover she was very warm and giving?

We can easily look at large oak trees and see how strong they are.  They stand tall and their root system goes deep within the earth.  Many live to be 200 years old.  Some have lived over a thousand years.  They weather many storms.  And we can not deny that it does take courage to survive the hostile storms of time.  

Have you ever looked into the face of an old person with pity and hope never to be like her? Or have you wondered about the storms she has weathered and the courage it took to live the hard life she led?  We often misjudge the courage buried within the hearts of the people we meet.

Yet, it is the flower in spring that survives a late snow that draws our attention.  By nature, it is fragile and its life is short.  Though, it has a rare courage that cannot be denied — to hold its petals high in the face of unwanted cold.  We have all met that child who faces death with a courage we fail to see within ourselves.

As artists, writers and storytellers, we must look deep inside and see the truth beneath the surface.  We must find the courage to tell our story in words and images.  Do you have the courage found within the flower poking through the snow?  Are you as strong as the oak tree standing in your backyard?  Are you able to look truth in the face and share the pain you have felt?