Overcoming Obstacles is the Key to Success


    As I sit in a powerless Houston home, it is funny how powerless one can become in their own life.  Hurricane Ike’s devastation to the Texas Gulf Coast is similar on a much smaller scale to the devastation that occurred in New Orleans as a result to Hurricane Katrina in 2005.  However, a hurricane is only a microcosm of the journey of life in which we will be faced with many obstacles that we will have to overcome if we are to be successful in life.

    Throughout the years I have heard many African American males say they are unable to succeed in life because the chips are stacked against them.  Some say they are unsuccessful because they did not have a positive father figure to emulate, or they were not raised in an upper middle class family, or the realities of racism will simply not allow them to succeed in life.

    Truthfully, we all go through obstacles in life, but the ones that persevere through the hard times are the ones who make it to the finish line and are unable to reap the rewards of God’s many blessings for our lives.

    Hurricanes Ike and Katrina are clear indications that even those with a silver spoon in their mouth can one day be in a predicament when they are struggling just to put food in their mouths.

    It is time for all African Americans, especially males, to let go of the excuses and look at obstacles as God’s way of preparing us for greater glory.  In 2008, with the success of Senator Barack Obama, we have the opportunity to change the mindset of entire race of people who never thought this type of political success was even possible. 

    What if Obama let obstacles stand in his way?  Would he now be on a journey that could lead him to the White House?  What if Michael Jordan had given up on his basketball dream when he was cut from the varsity team as a high school sophomore?  Would he be still be the best basketball player of all time?  What if Muhammad Ali had given up on boxing when the government stripped him of his heavyweight title because of his stance on the Vietnam War?  Would he still be considered the greatest? 

    Furthermore, where will you be in 20 years if you give up on your dreams because the road to success is tough.  Will you be the strong Black man that God has called you to be or will you be just another statistic who did not have the strength to overcome the obstacles that we will all endure during our lifetime?

Smith is publisher of Regal Black Men’s Magazine.

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