Tuesday, December 10, 2013

the legacy of a legend -- Nelson Mandela

For wisdom is more profitable than silver, and her wages are better than gold.

There are a few people in our lifetime that stand out as great.  They are the people who leave their mark on people and serve by using their resources to make others people.  Nelson Mandela was such a person.

Too many people idolize athletes or the proverbial “bad boy”.  We ought to be looking for the people who are willing to use their lives for the good of others.

Mandela is such a man.  His life ended late last week.  He was put in prison for standing his ground.  He led his people as a great leader should.  He was colorblind.  What Nelson Mandela saw as important was the success of the people around him.  His willingness to serve no matter the cost for the good of others made him a great leader.

I share with you some quotes from Mandela.

"I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it.  The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear."  Nelson Mandela

Conquer fear, Mandela would say, by standing strong everyday.  As a Christian we have much to learn from men like this one.  Jesus served in the same vein and took it a step further by dying for us.

"Real leaders must be ready to sacrifice all for the freedom of their people."  Nelson Mandela

He sacrificed freedom for the good of others.  Freedom took on a new price as he spent time in prison because of what he stood for.

"A fundamental concern for others in our individual and community lives would go a long way in making the world the better place we so passionately dreamt of."  Nelson Mandela

To grow a great community you have to make others great by using what you have to serve the needs of others and by helping them be successful in life.  Zig Ziglar said, “You will get what you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want.”  Jesus served others.  Greatness is seen in being a servant for the greater good.  Mandela did that as well.

"For to be free is not merely to cast off one's chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others."  Nelson Mandela

I love the thoughts Mandela shared about freedom.  God as well wants to give us freedom from the things that hold us back.  Let God forgive your sin.  Believe what God says about who you are.  See freedom as something that begins inside you and is not derived from the situations of life that you find yourself in.

"Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again."  Nelson Mandela

That is a great quote to end with.  I am grateful for the life and the example of Nelson Mandela.  May our lives emulate the good we saw, read about and what others talked about through the life Nelson Mandela lived.

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happy birthday, Julie

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