For Courage

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Sunset at Ternate Beach, Cavite, Philippines ©MTHerzog

When the light around you lessens

And your thoughts darken until

Your body feels fear turn

Cold as a stone in side,

When you find yourself bereft

Of any belief in yourself

And all you unknowingly

Leaned on has fallen,

When one voice commands

Your whole heart,

And it is raven dark,

Steady yourself and see

That it is our own thinking

That darkens your world,

Search and you will find

A diamond-thought of light,

Know that you are not alone

And that this darkness has purpose;

Gradually it will school your eyes

To find the one gift your life requires

Hidden within this night-corner.

Invoke the learning

Of every suffering

You have suffered.

Close your eyes

Gather all the kindling

About your heart

To create one spark.

That is all you need to nourish the flame

That will cleanse the dark

Of its weight of festered fear.

A new confidence will come alive

To urge you towards higher ground

Where your imagination

Will learn to engage difficulty

As to most rewarding threshold!

-John O’Donohue, For Courage from the book Benedictus

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