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Posted: May 18, 2018 1:04 p.m.
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Chaplain Corner

Mother’s courage, influence

“What is real courage?”  In the book, Gates of Fire: The Battle of Thermopylae, by Steven Pressfield, the warriors of Sparta discuss true courage. They distinguish it from the absence of fear or fear of failure. Many things can motivate acts of valor, but not all valor is motivated by courage! Courage is distinct from fear. True courage is a feminine trait, found especially in mothers! 

Pressfield writes: “Is it not the imperative of a mother’s blood, to give and to nurture, above all the produce of her own womb, the children she has borne in pain? We know that a lioness or a she-wolf will cast away her life without hesitation to preserve her cubs or pups…What could be more contrary to the female nature, to motherhood, than to stand unmoved and unmoving as her sons march off to death? That women, from some source unknown to us, summon the will to conquer this their own deepest nature is, I believe, the reason we stand in awe of our mothers and sisters and wives” (Gates of Fire pg. 234-235).  

In the Army, we care for America’s sons and daughters. We provide outstanding leadership and treat every person with dignity and respect because they have answered their nation’s call and entered into this noble profession. However, we must never forget that the personal courage of those in uniform is exceeded by the courage of Families, especially mothers, who have sent their precious children into the fray to defend our freedom. The wise gain an important foundation from their mothers, remembering her teaching and learning to love others.  

Throughout the Bible, mothers play an important role in the development leaders. Kings were taught scripture, called to repentance, and counseled on righteousness by their mothers. In 2 Kings 22, an eight-year-old king Josiah was instructed and taught to live righteously, love his nation, and lead well by his mother. Abe Lincoln once said “All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angelic mother.” This Mother’s Day, remember how you have been shaped and formed by the influence of your mother. Don’t take for granted the impact she’s had upon your life, and the courage she possess by loving a Soldier! 

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