I know that we have all had times when we’ve encouraged others to just “Hang in there!” And there are times when we’ve all been given that advice, too. It seems to just come as part and parcel of life. Good times, tough times. Easy and hardship. Peace and disturbance. It is all part of the cycle that Solomon described in Ecclesiastes…and at times it seems endless if we’re to be honest about it.
But, the ability to hang tough in a trying situation is a quality that I think we all admire. We all wish we were better at it ourselves, I suspect. It is often those who refuse to surrender, who stand strong against the wind and hail and batterings of life that achieve the greatest things. It is, however, doggone hard.
When I was last in Mendocino, I saw this weed (for surely that is what it is, but even weeds can have a beauty to them!) and thought about how hard it must have fought to live. It is growing in the vertical face of a cement wall along the main street in Mendocino. The wall forms the limit to the front end of cars where they pull in to park. But there it is – hanging on for all it is worth. With the frequent wind in Mendocino, I can understand how the seed blew into the crack, but not how it managed to stay there long enough to grow like this. How long did it hold on? I don’t know. But I think it deserves credit.
I only hope that I can learn to be as tough and determined when the elements of life batter me. Coming back from Africa recently, I don’t think that I could take what they do…I would have given up a long time ago, I suspect…and I would probably have been long dead by now. My hat is off to the Africans who live in the bush in the face of shattering poverty, yet they hang on and fight for each and every day of life.
ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: 240 BC – The Greek mathematician Eratosthenes was the first to estimate accurately the diameter and circumference of the Earth. He compared the lengths of the noon shadows in Syene (now Aswan) and Alexandria in Egypt. He derived his calculation by knowing the distance between the two cities and correctly assuming that the sun was so far away that its rays were essentially parallel when they reach the Earth.
1586 – English colonists sailed from Roanoke Island, North Carolina, after failing to establish England’s first permanent settlement in America.
TRIVIA FOR TODAY: According to a recent Gallup poll, 11 percent of the U.S. population believes in ghosts and other supernatural entities.