A Proverb a day gets you on your way!
Here is the Daily Dose for Thursday, June 23, 2016.
Commit yourself to instruction; listen carefully to words of knowledge. Proverbs 23:12
A couple of years ago I was honored to meet Admiral Barry Black. Admiral Black is the current chaplain of the United States Senate and a former admiral in the United States Navy. If you had met Admiral Black when he was a youngster you would not have guessed that years later he would be the a United States Naval Admiral, the United States Senate Chaplain, and be the holder of not one, but two, earned doctoral degrees. If you had met him years a ago, he was just another black kid from Baltimore. Bright, enthusiastic, but just another poor kid from the ghetto in Baltimore. In Admiral Black’s own words:
“One of the reasons why I call my book ”From the Hood to the Hill” is because we grew up in the hood. We grew up in the toxic pathology of an inner city ghetto. There were prostitutes on the corner, there were drug pushers, there was domestic violence that you could see sitting on the steps – of your home. So, it was a very challenging situation. And my mother, who for a significant portion of my life was on public assistance, would often have difficulty paying the rent and ensuring that her children matriculated at Christian schools because my seven siblings and I all matriculated at Christian schools from grade 1 all the way through graduate school. So, to pull this off, many times she couldn’t pay the rent, and when you don’t pay the rent, you will be evicted. And so, three times in my life, I came home from my nice Christian school to find our furniture out on the street.”
Growing up in those less than perfect circumstances one would wonder how Admiral Black became Admiral Black. I will never forget what he told me. Admiral Black said, “I never stopped learning and trying to make the most of myself.” He told me he dedicated himself to continued learning and trying to reach his potential. It didn’t happen quickly. It didn’t happen over night, but a dedicated kid from inner city Baltimore made it from the hood to the hill.
No matter what happens in life keep going. You can transcend your circumstances, your setbacks and your disappointments if you just keep going. Keeping going requires that you commit yourself to getting somewhere. No matter how long it takes, no matter how rocky the road, one step at a time, one credit at a time, one word at a time, keep committing yourself to the pursuit of excellence and one day, you will get there. Just keep going.