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Issue 585 - Today’s Adversity Is Preparation for Tomorrow’s Adversity (Harriet Tubman)

Woodens Wisdom
Wooden's Wisdom - Volume 12 Issue 585
Craig Impelman Speaking |  Championship Coaches |  Champion's Leadership Library Login



Harriet Tubman (1822 - 1913) is an extraordinary American hero. Born into slavery, Tubman escaped from slavery in 1849 and subsequently made some thirteen missions to rescue approximately 70 slaves.
When she was eight years old, Tubman worked as a house servant to a young married woman. After doing chores all day Harriet was required to stay up all night and rock the couple’s infant child sitting on the floor next to the mother's bed.
If Harriet lapsed into a nap and the infant cried the woman grabbed her bedside whip and whipped Harriet until she awoke and began rocking the child again.
Once, after taking a lump of sugar from a bowl, Harriet ran out the door with the woman chasing her with a whip. Harriet ran to a neighboring farm and hid in a pigpen. Exhausted from running away, and too small to climb in carefully, she tumbled into the pen and landed in the midst of "an ole sow, an' perhaps eight or ten little pigs. I was so beat out I couldn't stir."
She stayed from Friday until the following Tuesday, fearful of the mother pig as she fought over scraps of food that came down the trough. Upon her return she was beaten and returned to her "master" a poor, scarred wreck, nothing but skin and bone, with the words that "She wasn’t worth a six-pence."
Tubman did not recall these atrocities with bitterness, but rather forgiveness. She said these experiences gave her the toughness and endurance she needed to rescue slaves.
She was prepared by the habit of long enforced wakefulness, as a slave, for the night watches in the woods,dens and caves,with slave catchers on her track,.
She led slaves to their freedom through the swamps and backwoods on foot traveling at night and hiding during the day, often with no rest.
She viewed the cruelty she endured, as a slave,as a blessing in disguise. It prepared her to lead others to freedom, over and over, against seemingly impossible odds.
How do you view adversity?

Yours in Coaching,
Craig Impelman




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Application Exercise



Taking His Place

He's doing double duty now;
Time's silver gleams upon his brow,
And there are lines upon his face
Which only passing years can trace.
And yet he's turned back many a page
Long written in the book of age,
For since their boy has marched away,
This kindly father, growing gray,
Is doing for the mother true
The many things the boy would do.

Just as the son came home each night
With youthful step and eyes alight,
So he returns, and with a shout
Of greeting puts her grief to rout.
He says that she shall never miss
The pleasure of that evening kiss,
And with strong arms and manner brave
He simulates the hug he gave,
And loves her, when the day is done,
Both as a husband and a son.

His laugh has caught a clearer ring;
His step has claimed the old-time swing,
And though his absence hurts him, too,
The bravest thing that he can do
Is just to try to take his place
And keep the smiles on mother's face.
So, merrily he jests at night—
Tells her with all a boy's delight
Of what has happened in the town,
And thus keeps melancholy down.

Her letters breathe of hope and cheer;
No note of gloom she sends from here,
And as her husband reads at night
The many messages she writes,
He chuckles o'er the closing line.
She's failed his secret to divine—
'When you get home,' she tells the lad,
'You'll scarcely know your doting dad;
Although his hair is turning gray,
He seems more like a boy each day.'

Edgar Albert Guest (1881-1959)






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