Learning Persistence at Palm Beach Day Academy

The esteemed Palm Beach Day Academy brought in author Jerry Spinelli on this subject:

Striding to the front of the auditorium to launch his talk, the father of six made another important point: Don’t overlook the value of failure and the importance of persistence.

He quizzed the kids about what they would do if they, like he, had experienced an abundance of rejections when he tried to publish his first manuscripts.

After responses that included, “publish it yourself,” and “send it to a new publisher,” one brave student advised, “write a new book.”

Spinelli waited for the expected roars of laughter and then praised the student for his choice. That’s what Spinelli had done.

Forty years ago, they could have saved themselves the honorarium.

There’s a great deal of talk about the effects of people, finding themselves at the bottom of the social heap, being bullied.  And I experienced both at the Palm Beach Day Academy, in a social system that could be very brutal.  But one thing it did teach me was to stick adversity out.  That was reinforced by the fact that my parents did not even consider getting me out of what was then Palm Beach Day School, even they were doubtless aware of what I was going through.

There are some situations where it becomes impossible to properly function.  For the rest, there’s persistence in the face of adversity.

Therefore, having been pronounced righteous as the result of faith, let us enjoy peace with God through Jesus Christ, our Lord. It is through him that, by reason of our faith, we have obtained admission to that place in God’s favor in which we not stand. So let us exult in our hope of attaining God’s glorious ideal. And not only that, but let us also exult in our troubles; For we know that trouble develops endurance, and endurance strength of character, and strength of character hope, And that ‘hope never disappoints.’ For the love of God has filled our hearts through the Holy Spirit which was given us… (Romans 5:1-5, TCNT.)

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