(For example... my friend Karen: http://waistingaway.wordpress.com/author/pinkcamojeep/ )
When we lived in Charleston, SC we went, one year, to the Air Show at the Air Base there. I watched as the Blue Angels flew those planes at speeds that I can't comprehend and although I know they were yards apart, to me they seemed inches from colliding. At that time Michael Jordan was "all that" and I remember thinking to myself, "Why do people make such a fuss about Michael Jordan when these are the guys who should be paid the big bucks and held in high esteem." After all, those guys not only entertain us but they would drop everything to protect our country; with their lives if necessary.
I am inspired by a little girl who, days before her 4th birthday, laid stone still in the dentist's chair while the profusely perspiring dentist had to pull one of her front teeth because it had been damaged by a fall. All the while the hygienists and I, her mom, held back tears as we watched her tears stream down the outside of her eyes and down the sides of her face. Then, only 6 months later, this same precious little gift from God held back perfectly acceptable screams of pain and terror as she was sedated in order to remove her left pinky toe because she got too close to the weight machines her brothers and father were working out on. To this day (5 years later) I am amazed at the bravery such a little girl had within her and I still see this bravery solidly a part of her. And I wonder, in the depths of my being, why God felt the need to create such a strength in her. And I prepare myself for what I can only imagine will be the molding and shaping of my only living daughter.
I am inspired by two sisters-in-law. They have nothing in common except... CANCER. One ovarian and one breast. One had to undergo a year's worth of Chemo, twice in 5 years, and in spite of losing her hair and being sick as a dog, she didn't let the lack of complete healing deter her. She picked herself up and chose to find another avenue. Today she is a Master Chef with one of the premier Raw Food and Natural Healing organizations in the world. She is starting her own business and teaching others how to prepare their foods more naturally and what to look for in foods that might be dangerous to our bodies.
The other was blessed to have her cancer discovered before it was necessary for advanced treatments. She still had to have radical surgery and her recovery wasn't easy. Just a few years have gone by and she has recently finished her first half-marathon... at 50.
I am inspired by a friend who struggled for a couple years not knowing how to convince her husband that she was trustworthy. Month after month he pulled away and no matter how much she tried to love him he saw just the opposite. And day after day she prayed. On her knees, on her face, crying to God for answers, for guidance...not to change him but to change her. And week after week I sat amazed as she would tell me of her pursuits of holiness, of patience, of striving for the marriage she knew was there but seemed unreachable. And then, one day, out of the blue, he got it. A year later we still can't understand what happened, what led him to realize he had bliss sharing the same home with him but he did and so we say... It's just a God thing.
These are just a few of the people that inspire me. They have names like Kate and Pam and Na and Sandy and Karen and if I gave you their last names most of them would be unrecognizable to you. Facebook wouldn't let me enter them because their names are meaningless to those who programmed it's database. But, honestly, that's OK because they wouldn't be appreciated for who they are.
But to me: They make me hang on, dive in, and look up.