A Story of Patience
A Story of Patience
Abraham Lincoln 3-03-20
Abraham Lincoln, though born poor, became a very wise and just
president. He was president during the Civil War and was very loyal to the
side of the Union. He was born in a log cabin, so he had experience in what it is
like to be living in a home where you have to do everything, without any
servants to help you or anybody to support you. He lost several elections
before ever winning one. He learned success comes only after much patience.
After he became president, in his second term, he was assassinated after
having served his country to the fullest of his capability. Even though he was
assassinated, he still made his mark in American history. Without him, the
Union may have lost the Civil War and we might still have slavery today.
Abraham Lincoln teaches patience through his words: “We shall sooner have
the fowl by hatching it than by smashing it.”
This saying teaches us that we shall more quickly have the baby bird by
allowing nature to take its course on the egg’s shell than by destroying it
Patience results in success. Let us look at an example we can all relate
to. A child is baking delicious cookies on a Saturday morning in his kitchen.
He wants to take the cookies out of the oven early, but he waits because he
knows that waiting for the cookies to be fully cooked is a better option than
taking them out early and having some raw cookie batter. Even though the
delicious aroma of the cookies tempts him to take out the cookies early, he
waits patiently to hear the “ding” of the timer. When he finally takes out the
cookies on time, he has beautiful cookies that he can now enjoy.
Impatience, on the other hand, results in failure, not success. Careless
haste is even worse. Consider the same case: a child is baking delicious
cookies one Saturday morning. Instead of waiting patiently for the timer on
the oven to go off, he is desperate to have some warm yumminess in his
mouth and takes out the cookies five minutes before the timer signals. When
he looks at them, his face is full of disappointment because all he sees is a pile
of tasteless mess. When he eats one, he gets a tummy ache from the uncooked
dough. This example shows the result of being impatient. This unwise child
now has some cookie batter in the shape of circles and potential food
poisening instead of warm, gooey cookies.
Just as running around a brick wall saves a person’s life, in the same
way, patiently addressing problems procures the desired results.
In the story Robin Hood, an outlaw waits for his king (King John) to
understand the need of having to give to the poor. This outlaw waits for two
long, hard years for the king to change his mind about the law that states, “If
you give to the poor, you will have your land and money stripped from your
family’s name.” The outlaw is very patient with the king, especially when the
outlaw had many chances to kill the king and his men. But the outlaw’s
patience pays off in the end. The king finally lifts the law about giving to the
poor. Then, the outlaw celebrates this victory. The moral is that patience, no
matter how hard it is, will result in success.
The saying, “Our patience will achieve more than our force,” by Edmund
Burke has a similar meaning to Abraham Lincoln’s wise words. They both
understand that patience rather than haste is the key to success, even if you
have to work hard.
As a college new college graduate beginning your career in your chosen
field, opportunities for success will abound. You are talented and smart, and
full of energy, and you want your success now! However, in your career you
will face many challenges and obstacles to success. Therefore, there will be
many opportunities to speed up our success. But be careful. Sometimes in
your haste to accomplish, you may smash the very result you are desiring, as
with the chicks and the eggshell in Lincoln’s quote. Don’t smash the eggshell
in haste; you can kill the chick in the process!
“But I am smarter than my colleague running the meetings! I have better
solutions to this problem! They have had their chance already! It’s my turn!”
Yes, you want that baby chick of success hatched already – you want those
warm gooey cookies with your milk – you want the king to change the rules
NOW. But Lincoln would beg you beware of impatience and haste, lest you kill
the opportunity with force. If the hatched chick is your success, don’t go in
ready to crack the shell of your new company or colleagues to seize your
“deserved” success or recognition. Instead, consider nurturing the egg,
keeping it warm, and watching and learning from the example of a mother
bird who takes great care to make sure the hatching process goes well. The
process determines the outcome.
As the mother bird waits patiently and prepares for the successful hatching,
humble yourself to prepare for success well earned. Rest in the knowledge
that others have been in your place before you and have skills and
experiences that you are yet to benefit from. Take time to absorb all the
positive parts of your environment. Respect leadership. Submit to
opportunities to grow. Place energy into expanding your skillsets to offer
more to your workplace and colleagues, not to get more. As the mother bird
prepares wisely, yet waits, these are activities that show the wisdom of
patience. When it comes time for leadership to reward workers with
opportunities, your humble patience, not force, will allow nature to take its
course and allow the baby chick out of the shell to begin new life.
All people should heed the wise words of Abraham Lincoln regarding
patience. The civil war and Lincoln’s opponents to ending slavery were brutal
enemies of patience. Lincoln grew weary during the battles. He had many
choices to take the easy impatient route, but the goal was worth the patience
and effort. Slavery was abolished. Don’t let yourself be a slave to impatience.
Remind yourself of nurturing the egg, not cracking it. If you follow this advice,
long term success can be yours.