Teaching the Virtues: Courage
If Only I Had Courage...
By Mary Dixon Lebeau
When you mention the word “courage,” many children immediately think of the Cowardly Lion of Wizard of Oz fame, afraid of his own tail, who requested a solid heaping of courage from the wizard.
Remember the song he sang when he met up with Dorothy, the Scarecrow, and the Tin Man? The opening lines went like this:
“It’s sad believe me, missy,
When you’re born to be a sissy
Without the vim and verve….”
The Lion wanted to possess the bravery of his kinfolk -- the roaring, posturing kings of beasts. But his fears and trepidation left him shivering in his own shadow, reduced to being the “Sissy of the Forest.”
But perhaps the Cowardly Lion got it wrong. Some people will tell you it takes courage to be a sissy – to say no to a risky dare or let others call you “chicken” because you won’t do something wrong. Sometimes courage is backing down and refusing to go along with the crowd.
Then again, some say courage is just the opposite – going forward, despite the odds, despite your fears, despite the voices around you telling you something is impossible or hopeless.