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We live in an era of abusive critics. We hear presidential candidates denigrating former candidates as losers. We see our leaders constantly put down even though they are in the arena.

We need men and women in the game.

We need to ask of ourselves:

  • Am I striving valiantly?
  • Is my face marred by dust and sweat and blood?
  • Am I spending myself in a worthy cause?
  • Am I daring greatly?
  • Am I in the arena?

Jesus challenges us to live, not sit on the sidelines. Jesus doesn’t guarantee us “success” as defined by the world. He does promise us that we will live forever in his country. Jesus does promise us that we will succeed in his eyes if we do what he wants.

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better.

The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

Source: Quote by Theodore Roosevelt: “It is not the critic who counts; not the man wh…”