Courage is a concept you don’t hear much about anymore. Cowardice, yes. Politics over doing the right thing, YES. Courage, not so much.

The other day I heard an interview with Drew Gilpin Faust, who was the first female president of Harvard, 2007-2018. She said something that caught my attention. “Have the courage to be disturbed.” It was regarding learning about the Holocaust, our own slave trade, and I would add, the breaking of treaties with American Indians. We should be disturbed. Caucasians are a mixed bag, and you know what? So is every other people group. The school district of my home city, Little Rock, just issued a statement upholding its AP African American Studies classes. Hooray for them for facing uncomfortable truths. How can we do better if we don’t want to face what we got wrong?  

And there’s another kind of courage I’ve been thinking about. The courage to be disliked. There’s a book by that name. It’s a bestseller in Japan. It’s been called “Marie Kondo, but for your brain.” I haven’t read it so I can’t recommend it, but it has a good title. For people rooted in integrity, it sounds like freedom. When we break ranks or grow past any faulty ways of thinking, our courage to be disturbed has to move to the courage to be disliked, or it won’t work. It takes a lot of courage to have courage, but if I’m not mistaken, it’s what brings about real change.

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