Monday's Musings: Helen Keller Quote is an Inspiration to Overcome Suffering

by Mary Denman    @MaryDenman

Mary Denman Photography
My one word for 2015 is overcome. For those of you who haven't yet heard of the one word movement, it's one word for the year instead of lots of New Year resolutions. 

It's been a couple of months now, and I still need to remember my word when things get hard. To remind me to stand firm and overcome the trials that pop up. 

Because really, life is never going to be easy. There are going to be great moments in life. But there will always be challenges. 

I, for one, am tired of giving in to the challenges. 

Of letting them get the best of me.

Helen Keller Inspirational Quote, Photo by Mary Denman Photography
I saw this Helen Keller quote recently. "Although the world is full of suffering, it is full also of the overcoming of it."

Think about where she came from. Born with sight and hearing, she lost them after a childhood illness around 19 months. Can you imagine losing both your sight and hearing at such a young age? Being thrown in to a world of darkness and silence as a child? 

That's what happened.

Her isolation and frustration led to her becoming fairly wild by the time her teacher Anne Sullivan arrived when Helen was just 7. 

Anne spent hours and hours trying to get Helen to understand language to no avail. 

And then, one day, while pumping water over Helen's hand, Anne signed WATER into Helen's palm. Everything clicked. Helen understood the relationship between words and objects. Anne's teaching took off. 

Helen, who was also dumb or mute due to hearing loss, started to find her voice. 

She started learning. 

She started overcoming the incredible difficulties of her situation and become a student, then a college graduate, then a writer and an activist. 

She became a inspiration. 


Because she overcame her trials. She didn't let the difficult, depressing circumstances stop her. She overcame them. She even prospered. She blessed thousands of others. 

She lived a full, full life. 

She is inspiring me, even now. 

I have my sight, my hearing, my voice. 

Yet, difficult circumstances wear me down. Physical pain, migraines, losses.

Flowers overcoming a rock wall by Mary Denman
They wear on me and I let them.

I don't overcome them. 

But this year is different. 

I won't overcome them perfectly. 

But I am, with God's strength, learning to overcome. 

To prosper. 

To bless others. 

It's not a "once and done" battle. 

It's daily. 

And it's hard. 

But so is growing out of rocks like these flowers. 

So is learning language and how to speak when you're deaf, blind and mute.

Helen overcame all of this with the love of a dedicated teacher. 

God is dedicated to me. To helping me overcome.

If Helen Keller could overcome, what's my excuse for not doing it? 

There isn't one. 

Each day, I will arise and ask God to help me overcome the obstacles I face.

How about you? What obstacles have grown too big in your world? Obstacles that threaten to overwhelm you?

What do you need to stand up to, to overcome? 

Will you join me in this walk of faith?

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”      John 16:33

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1 comment:

  1. You are an overcomer, Mary! You've tackled a lot of health issues and heartbreak over the past couple years but you never fail to inspire and teach me with your blogs. I'm looking forward to seeing you at Blue Ridge!