Press On: The Virtuous Power of Endurance

November 6, 2018

“Endurance is the essence of courage. Endurance is not passivity, for it requires a strong, proactive spirit. In endurance, man’s inmost and deepest strength reveals itself. It can be harder and entail greater courage for a soldier to be pinned down in a cold, damp foxhole than to charge into a hale of bullets, all flags flying.”

Alexandre Havard

Endurance enables the depth of a man’s character. It is the mortar that holds his virtues in place. In a humorous short story titled “The Man Who Corrupted Hadleyburg,” Mark Twain tells of a righteous but naive little town that is transformed overnight (literally) from a village of model citizens to back-stabbing thieves by the prospect of unclaimed treasure.

Endurance testifies to the depth of a man’s virtue and the nobility of his heart. Twain obliquely describes the superficiality of virtue in form when one’s character does not have the resolve to maintain integrity.

What Courages Is

As Havard delineates above, Endurance is an aspect of Courage. He continues to clarify in his book, Virtuous Leaderhsip, that courage is only possible after the virtues of Prudence and Justice have been exercised to the best of one’s ability.

For example, as Andrew Leatherborrow chronicles in his book on nuclear development, Chernobyl 01:23:40, on the morning the Manhattan Project was preparing for the detonation of the first nuclear bomb in history, one of the lead scientists was taking wagers with observers as to whether the bomb would ignite the atmosphere and destroy Nevada or the whole world. Proceeding with the detonation with these expectations is not an example of courage. It is an example of stupidity (the barest minimum of prudence was not met).

Courage is often described in terms of the instantaneous glory of a bold, self-sacrificing act, but it is specifically in Endurance that a man may discern a path, guided by prudence and justice, and embark on a long, hard, boring, stifling, seemingly-pointless-at-times, frustrating, interminable, but immensely formative journey of resolutely persevering in pursuit of a noble end. The critical point here is that one need not ingest (in the most literal sense) a live grenade to give one’s life in love. Endurance is the everyday, almost imperceptible glory of self-sacrifice that allows a man to truly live in accordance with his highest calling.

Examples of Endurance

There are countless examples of heroic endurance. Most remain unsung.  Two examples of more widely known models of endurance are Louis Zamperini, a WWII pilot who survived a plane crash in the Pacific ocean, almost two months adrift on a raft, and then more than two years in Japanese prisoner-of-war camps, and Walter J. Ciszek, an American Jesuit who survived for 23 years in Soviet Russia tending to the spiritual needs of hundreds of peasants despite brutal beatings, torture, and 15 years of hard labor in the infamous Gulag. Both of these men offered their lives day by day in order to bring truth and freedom to countries utterly ravaged by political ideologies.

To develop one’s own endurance, it may be prudent to start small. Make a commitment to some minor but frequent mortification such as skipping creamer in one’s coffee. This will strengthen the muscles of one’s will and allow one to develop endurance by taking on increasingly difficult sacrifices. It may be useful to fortify this effort by absorbing stories of endurance through history. The books on Zamperini and Ciszek are a great place to start. The story of Ernest Shackleton as detailed in Shackelton’s Adventures is also incredible.

The Call to Endurance

As men, we are called to take up our cross and follow Christ. For some, that journey is short. For many of us, living our vocation is a long road that can be eroded by boredom, selfishness and a slew of other temptations. Each virtue will help a man to stay the course. Prudence enables a man to accurately assess the conditions of the road; Justice gives him the love of Truth that will point him towards the Eternal Truth; Endurance will give him the strength to continue placing one foot in front of the other in dutiful service of Christ. Developing the virtue of Endurance through daily mortification and prayer will give us the discipline and resolve follow Him for as far as He leads us.


Pat Archer is a finance professional in Phoenix Arizona. His growing family numbers two sons and a beautiful bride.

Share:
Author
Guest Contributer

Share:
Liked this post? Take a second to support us on Patreon!

Don’t Miss a Thing

Subscribe to get email notifications of new posts and special offers PLUS a St. Joseph digital poster.

Related

COMMENTS

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Felipa says

    Have you ever thought about creating an e-book or guest authoring on other blogs?
    I have a blog centered on the same information you discuss
    and would love to have you share some stories/information. I know my subscribers would appreciate
    your work. If you are even remotely interested, feel
    free to send me an email.

  2. mediawiki.konos.cl says

    I’d like to thank you for the efforts you have put in writing this website.
    I really hope to see the same high-grade blog posts by you in the future as well.
    In fact, your creative writing abilities has encouraged me to get my own site now 😉

    Here is my web-site; download 918kiss – mediawiki.konos.cl

  3. xe88 says

    Heya! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any issues with hackers?
    My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up losing several weeks
    of hard work due to no data backup. Do you have any methods to stop hackers?

    Feel free to surf to my blog post xe88

  4. https://duaxeoto.net/diendan/profile.php?id=79758 says

    hey there and thank you for your information – I’ve definitely picked up anything new from right here.

    I did however expertise some technical issues using this site,
    since I experienced to reload the web site a lot of times
    previous to I could get it to load correctly.
    I had been wondering if your web hosting is OK? Not that I’m complaining, but sluggish loading instances times will very frequently affect your placement in google
    and can damage your high quality score if advertising and marketing with Adwords.
    Well I am adding this RSS to my email and could look out
    for a lot more of your respective interesting content.

    Ensure that you update this again very soon.

    My page mega888 (https://duaxeoto.net/diendan/profile.php?id=79758)

  5. mega888apk says

    Definitely believe that which you said. Your favorite reason appeared to be on the internet the simplest thing to be aware of.
    I say to you, I definitely get irked while people consider worries that they just do not know about.
    You managed to hit the nail upon the top and
    defined out the whole thing without having side effect , people could take a signal.
    Will probably be back to get more. Thanks

    Here is my webpage :: mega888apk

  6. id test pussy888 says

    This design is wicked! You certainly know how to keep a
    reader amused. Between your wit and your videos, I was almost moved
    to start my own blog (well, almost…HaHa!) Great job. I really loved what you had to say, and more than that,
    how you presented it. Too cool!

    Here is my website id test pussy888

  7. catholicgentleman.net says

    Just wish to say your article is as astonishing. The clearness in your post is simply great and i can assume you are an expert on this subject.
    Fine with your permission allow me to grab your RSS feed to keep updated with forthcoming
    post. Thanks a million and please carry on the enjoyable work.

  8. catholicgentleman.net says

    Hello There. I found your blog using msn. That is a very
    well written article. I’ll be sure to bookmark it and return to learn extra of your helpful info.

    Thanks for the post. I will definitely comeback.

  9. catholicgentleman.net says

    Hey just wanted to give you a quick heads up. The words in your article seem to be
    running off the screen in Chrome. I’m not sure if this is a format issue or something to
    do with browser compatibility but I thought I’d post to let you know.
    The design and style look great though! Hope you
    get the issue resolved soon. Many thanks

  10. adu Ayam taji says

    Ηeya are using WordPress for youг blog platform? I’m new to the blog wоrld
    but I’m trying to get starteⅾ аnd create my own. Do yоu
    ned anny coding expertise to make your owwn blog? Any
    heⅼp ѡould bee greatly appreciated!

  11. https://acnh.buzz says

    Simply desire to say your article is as amazing. The clearness to your submit is simply excellent and
    i can assume you are an expert in this subject. Fine along with your permission let me to
    take hold of your RSS feed to keep updated with forthcoming post.
    Thank you a million and please carry on the gratifying work.

    Here is my web-site; mega888 download – https://acnh.buzz

  12. mega888apk says

    Fantastic site you have here but I was wanting to know if
    you knew of any community forums that cover the
    same topics talked about here? I’d really like to be a part of group where I can get feed-back from other knowledgeable individuals that
    share the same interest. If you have any recommendations, please let me know.
    Bless you!

    My web page – mega888apk

  13. pussy888 says

    Hello, i read your blog occasionally and i own a similar
    one and i was just wondering if you get a lot of
    spam responses? If so how do you reduce it, any plugin or anything you can advise?
    I get so much lately it’s driving me mad so any help
    is very much appreciated.

    My website … pussy888

  14. 918kaya kiosk says

    Thanks , I have recently been searching for information approximately this topic for
    ages and yours is the best I have came upon till now. However, what in regards to the bottom line?
    Are you certain about the source?

    Also visit my blog – 918kaya kiosk

Trackbacks

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *