It Takes Heat To Toughen Up.
Steel is iron plus fire.
Gold is not purified without great heat so the dross floats to the top and can be scraped off.
A friend of mine makes wood carvings but you don’t find the beauty inside the log without chipping away and cutting with a chainsaw much of the exterior.
Refinement is costly, uncomfortable and painful.
Discovering our strength of character as human being is the same.
It’s process and sometimes, usually, it sucks.
Great character is not made in luxury and yet we live in a culture that expects everything and wants to nothing or very little to get it.
Everything seems to be a right when that’s not the way the natural world works, not even close.
One of the things we appreciate about Montana is the extremes. Winter is extreme but still people put on their muck boots, climb in the truck, slam “er” into four-wheel-drive and get “er” done.
I don’t get to do my twice a week runs like I did in Oregon and I miss that. When it’s a few degree’s below zero, outside is not a place to run. But I find other ways to get my workout in.
I like having to stoke my downstairs wood stove to help keep the upstairs toasty warm because it means running to the barn, braving the wind, to be part of an age-old process not simply flicking on the furnace and calling it good.
As I think about this a little deeper I wonder that when things get too easy and we no longer need suffering (heat) to harden our character, if we don’t miss out or skip some very important lessons.
We live in a world where many young and old people struggle to find value, a mate, contentment and success. Maybe life has gotten too easy?Maybe a bit of entitlement is what snuffs out the fire and the dross is never fully removed to discover the gold in our character?
Hard is a good thing. Struggle is a teacher and refinement doesn’t come in being given something it comes when you work for it.
I must remind myself of this today and again tomorrow.
I don’t want to be weak I want to be that man who can stand up to whatever is thrown his way.
I watch as young people begin to hear the message of responsibly and realize lighting that fire under them is what gives life meaning.
Especially young men are rejecting the “you deserve it” culture as they allow heat and struggle to help light their way.
We live in exciting times of rediscovery.
Culture will spit and spew but let it.
Culture was never really been on the side of creating great character but we are.
Now, go work for it.