Students looking for purpose can learn from the life of Winston Churchill. Arguably the greatest political figure of the 20th Century, they may not realize, had a difficult upbringing. Born prematurely, suffering from a speech impediment, and inclined to depression, Churchill was essentially rejected and scorned by his parents. He performed poorly in school and passed the entrance examination into the Royal Military College only after his third attempt. When his father, Lord Randolph, died when Winston was 21, he left only debts. Yet the ‘Last Lion’ persevered. Churchill did not let his family and environment hold him back. He did not allow the wounds he suffered as a youth handicap him. He pushed himself, believed in himself, and would not accept defeat. He made himself bound and determined, like a bulldog. Here is a quote from Lord Churchill:
“When great causes are on the move in the world, stirring all men's souls, drawing them from their firesides, casting aside comfort, wealth, and the pursuit of happiness in response to impulses at once awe-striking and irresistible, we learn that we are spirits, not animals, and that something is going on in space and time which, whether we like it or not, spells duty.”
Churchill's resolution was not inspired by his need to prove himself. Churchill took up such a noble cause, in leading his nation during the greatest war in history, because he felt called to do so. He had a sense of his spiritual nature. We are not animals, but men and women created by God with a specific calling. If we can recognize God, and the sense of duty he gives each of us, we will find ourselves with purpose. And even if we face setbacks, we will never surrender.