‘Be Bold, and mighty forces will come to your aid’….
— Basil King
Yesterday as I wrestled with a problem, two words came to my mind: Be Bold.
On a warm summers day a lady drove out into the country. She was troubled and weary and sighed over and over again as she drove. Her mind was agitated by uncertainties, anxieties and fears.
Suddenly she stopped her car as she realised that she was lost. All her fears and apprehensions came tumbling into her mind. While she sat trembling a man on horse back came along side. “I am lost. I am afraid,” she shouted to the old man.
“Be bold,” said the man. “You drove this far without fear. You drive a car and there are many women who are afraid to do so. You decided to take an unknown path and you did it boldly. Now take courage from all those decisions you have already made and just continue being bold.”
She never found out who he was, but that day her life changed.
Be Bold: that was no exhortation to be reckless or foolhardy. Boldness means a deliberate decision to change the way we look at our next step. Not to be governed by voices from the past but by seeing ourselves in a more confident light in small courageous decisions we have taken and gained from.
The lady had to realise that she had ability to learn driving, she had the courage to take an unknown path and that she had the humility to be able to accept advice from a stranger.
She was already equipped for boldness.
Have you heard about practising boldness?
A famous British mountaineer said that occasionally a climber gets himself into a position where he can’t back down, he can only go up. But sometimes those same mountaineers practise putting themselves into that position on purpose. “When there’s nowhere to go but up,” he said, “you jolly well go up..!”
Going up, that’s what being bold is all about.
But this willingness to put yourself in a position where you will have to extend yourself to the utmost is not one that can be acquired overnight. Every part of you will cry out that it can’t be done. You will always find something easier to do, someone to lean on, somebody’s negative voice to listen to.
But be bold.
I end with the words of King Alfred the Great: “If you have a fearful thought, share it not with a weakling, whisper it to your saddle bow, and ride forth singing..!”