Adversity, Character, and the Quest for Power

securedownloadEven though I think anything above 90 degrees is too hot, I do enjoy the four seasons that Kansas offers her people. The recent snow is a case in point.

In a matter of hours we went from far too dry and a little too dusty to a winter wonderland. Whenever I heard someone complain about the snow, I reminded them that we needed moisture regardless of the form or fashion in which it fell.

Mother Nature used the tree, in the picture above, as a canvas on which she could paint a smiling face. This reminds of what someone said about the storms of life: “Adversity does not build character, but it does reveal it.”

Abraham Lincoln presided over a difficult and stormy period of our nation’s history, and he once said that almost “any man can stand adversity, but if you really want to test his character, give him power.”

With the sequestration standing at the threshold, I’ve been thinking about the relationship that exists between adversity, character, and the quest for power. This relationship was summarized by Lord Acton when he said: “Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

When I look at the political shenanigans of the Democrats and Republicans and their self-serving rhetoric, it is easy to see a congress full of characters; however, it’s much more difficult to see genuine character within the congress.

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