By Study and Also By Faith

An LDS (Mormon) blog representing a search for knowledge, understanding, and wisdom.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Inspiration from Everywhere

I watched yesterday NBCs show about the 2005 Ironman Triathlon that takes place in Hawaii. Every once in awhile, they show reruns of the most recent Ironman, so I have seen those several times.

I'm not particularly into sports, but I find those shows so inspiring. There are always people who have struggled to overcome some real obstacles in their lives--elderly people (there was an 80-year-old who finished this year!), cancer survivors, the handicapped. This year, a 34-year-old man who has been diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease) finished. So did a young woman with one leg (she has an artificial leg).

Now, the Ironman Triathlon is an especially grueling event and I don't feel that participating in that is necessary, but what I am getting at is that these are people who had a need to prove, to themselves at least, that they could overcome some great obstacle and complete something that was very difficult. These are people who are out there living life and trying things and working hard. They are being persistent and diligent. They have self-discipline. I admire that greatly. I wish the inspired feeling I get lasted longer.

What are some things, big or small, that inspire you? What encourages you to work harder at your own life, in whatever way you need/want to? What helps you hang on to that inspiration?



Blogger Lisa M. said...


Thanks for this post!

For me, I see real inspiration EVERYWHERE, where I used to miss it. I just shake my head at the things that have been right before my eyes, that I used to not even notice.

What a dunce.

This is a perfect example of human faith and fortitude. I too have just been overwhelmed by the things that can be accomplished when it seems there are so many obsticles.

I have been reading about Erik Weihenmayer, the blind man to climb Mount Everest. WOW. I wonder if he has any idea how just reading about his adventures has been such an inspiration to me. When I first learned of my son's blindness, I really thought his life was.. well just not going to be a good one. How wrong I was (again wearing the Dunce hat) through his example, and the examples of others have really been a corner stone in enabling me to concieve that while Ethan's life might not be the one, I had anticipated for him, he still has all the opportunities for growth, exploration and achievement.

I am SO grateful for these examples, and what they have taught me.

Great post.

4:20 AM  
Blogger Amira said...

There are individuals or people here that inspire me. Maybe not inspirining in the way you're talking about, Mary, but these people are my inspiration:

I am learning Russian in part so I can talk more to one of the members here. She speaks about as much English as I speak Russian, but I really feel a connection with her and I want to be able to communicate with her better.

All the members here inspire me though. Their isolation is extreme, but they are faithful. I hope that they can have their own branch here someday.

A few particular babies at the baby house inspire me. I was playing with one on Thursday- just simply rubbing his cheek. He laughed and laughed every time I did that. Those babies are hungry for attention and it's so easy to give it to them.

And finally, my husband's students inspire me. They want to learn and are curious, but they don't have the resources they need. They make me grateful for the opportunities I've had and I'm glad I can spend time with them.

7:28 AM  
Blogger Mary A said...

Lisa, glad you liked my post. One day, your Ethan will take his turn at inspiring others, and a lot of it will be due to your encouraging him. The examples of others certainly can help us hang in there, can't they?!

Amira, I know what you mean. It's hard to put into words, but I am so inspired by those who have few resources, whether it is church or family or education, and yet they persist and do the best they can with what they have, trusting that more opportunities will come to them later. Trusting that it is worth their while to do what they can now.

Pioneer stories, stories of hard times in foreign lands or in the Depression or in war, stories of individual hardship due to illness or loss--all of these inspire me. I am just in awe of such strong and courageous people--all the more so when they do not think of themselves as extrordinary in any way.

It just fills my heart and makes me want to do better myself. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Amira and Lisa. Anyone else who wants to add comments, please do so!

8:22 AM  
Blogger chronicler said...

It's stories of good triumphin gover evil or the long shot winning, those are the things I love. I turn quickly each year to watch the Iditerod. Talk about a triumph of overcoming weakness! It is a favorite of mine. I love rooting for the underdog.

8:24 PM  
Blogger s'mee said...

Funerals. I went to a funeral long ago where the children of this man I never knew stood up and congratulated their dad on his "Graduation Day". The day he had worked for all his life had finally come. Another of a woman who's children praised her for this and that.

I find myself at funerals more than I wish; but the one thing I always bring away with me is that inspiration for a better life. One dotted with points that will define me as the person I wish I will become.

That, and chocolate.

2:26 PM  
Anonymous Barb said...

One of my first friends when I joined the LDS Church is a real inspiration to me. He has had compromised health for as long as I have known him and yet a real zest for life. He loves life and learning. He also has one well-developed sense of humor. What has touched me the most was his offer to help my grandpa with dementia if we ever needed someone in a pinch. I said that there were steps and he replied that he could wear his prosthesis. I reminded how sometimes that he was so swollen that he could not wear it. He replied he could always wear it but that when it was swollen there would be what I took as excruciating pain.

10:44 AM  

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