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Persistence is a gift we are given when we come into this world. The word is defined in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary as: “to go on resolutely or stubbornly in spite of difficulties.” It is a powerful word because it holds so many possibilities. For example, look at the trees in the photo below:

Half Mountain,  snow covered trees, with a  sunrise. Found on Pinterest on 8-20-16.

Found on Pinterest on 8-20-16.

These trees started as seedlings  under the heavy snows of winter. They landed on the side of a mountain, defying gravity. With time, the harsh winds and ice taught them the meaning of hardship. When their tops broke through the crust, they found surviving was hard. They would struggle their whole lives to survive the elements.

The above photo draws us to them. The trees show courage and fortitude. In the midst of harsh reality, a sunrise appears lending beauty to their fight for existence. We experience admiration, and a sense of glory in their struggle.

In another photo below, a large tree grows in a harsh environment. It has survived over the years, and the branches reflect the difficulties it has gone through. We could look at the tree and say, “That’s an ugly tree. Trees are most likely to be tall and have straight branches. These branches are crooked, and the tree trunk looks stubby.”

Found on Pinterest on 4-18-16.

Found on Pinterest on 4-18-16.







But a closer and longer look would cause us to pause. We would notice its size, the strength of its trunk and the beauty of the curves in its branches and their symmetry. We would find ourselves admiring its strength and power, and the tree’s strong sense of what it is. It is unapologetic that it looks different. The tree seems to say, “accept me as I am, and not what you want me to be.”

Like the trees, we each are unique and we landed in environments when we were born, that we had no choice in picking. Each environment came with difficulties and blessings. Some of us ended up with more blessings than others. Some of us grew tall and some of us grew short. Many of us grew up with loving, caring caretakers and some of us did not. We all fought to survive, and live life full of possibilities and joy.

The real differences between us were the number of resources we had; and whether we had learned to love and still keep hope alive despite the abuse, a lack of emotional support, and the genes we inherited. The circumstances life dealt us played a part. The outcomes were dependent on whether we were willing to fight for something better, and to choose joy despite episodes of despair.

Some of us still struggle daily because of the past, and the lack of resources we now have. If we want to partake of joy, we have to choose life and select joy. We have to work for it by being vulnerable, by opening ourselves up to new experiences, and allowing ourselves to read, write, and communicate with others. It will be difficult. It will take persistence, but if we persevere, and we reach out to choose joy, we will one day come to hold it.


Found on lessionslearnedinlife.com. on 6-19-16.

Found on lessionslearnedinlife.com. on 6-19-16.