In Others’ Words: When Courage is the Testing Point
There are all sorts of lists of virtues — morally excellent behavior. Some lists are as short as four or seven virtues … some lists go on in alphabetical order.
But when all is said in done — whether you limit your list of virtues to four, as the Greeks did — or expand it as we are wont to do today, I think C.S.Lewis got it right: every virtue demands courage. At some time or another, we must decide if we are going to stay true to our beliefs. We must decide: Do I truly value this virtue — even when no one else does?
- Am I brave enough to stand up for honesty when everyone else prefers the lie?
- Am I willing to show kindness when others are siding with a bully? (And we can all think of times when that has happened.)
- Will I remain loyal … when there is more benefit to me to walk away?
- Will I remain trustworthy even if no one’s around to see me do the wrong thing — or to give less than my best?
Courageous choices not only shape who we are, they show who we are — what we believe.
In Your Words: I started a small list of virtues today — what would you add to the list? When has courage helped you live out a virtue you believe in?