For those of you who, like me, never cease to be inspired by the words and the character of the late Zig Ziglar, here’s yet another example of the wisdom he left us. –JDS
Somebody once said that success without adversity is not only empty, it is not possible. One of my favorite observations is that the only way to the mountaintop is through the valley, and, in most cases, a series of valleys.
I think of one of the greatest books ever written, Pilgrim’s Progress, written by John Bunyan during a six-month imprisonment in Bedford Jail. Robinson Crusoe was written by Daniel Defoe in prison. Sir Walter Raleigh, after he fell from favor with the queen, wrote his History of the World during a thirteen-year prison sentence.
The great poet Dante worked and died in exile, but while there his contributions to mankind were immeasurable. Cervantes, who wrote Don Quixote in a Madrid jail, was so poor he couldn’t even get paper for his life’s writing, but used scraps of leather. Milton did his best writing blind, sick and poor, and Beethoven composed his greatest music after he had gone deaf.
These people, instead of complaining about their cruel fates, took advantage of whatever opportunity they had. We will never know, but we must wonder if we would have heard of Helen Keller, had that childhood disease not robbed her of both her sight and hearing.
Would Franklin Delano Roosevelt have made it to the White House had he not been afflicted with polio? Was his confinement to the bed and later the wheelchair the reason he was able to think his life philosophy through and develop the style and manner that led him into the most powerful and important position in the world for four consecutive terms?
You probably have friends or acquaintances with some serious handicaps who’ve accomplished some incredible feats. The question is, would they have risen to greatness had they not had those adversities to overcome? If adversity has come your way, don’t give up the ship. Think in terms of what you have left and the fact that victory is even sweeter when you overcome adversity. Give it a shot and I’ll SEE YOU AT THE TOP!
Zig Ziglar is known as America’s Motivator. He authored 33 books and produced numerous training programs. He will be remembered as a man who lived out his faith daily. (This article reprinted with permission from Ziglar, Inc.)