In anticipation of the announcement of the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize winner, I heard a lot of buzz about Malala.
If you don’t know Malala, she’s a 16 year-old girl from Pakistan that has been an outspoken advocate of education, especially for girls. As a result, she became a target of the Taliban. One year ago, they seized her bus as she rode home from school and shot her in the head at point-blank range. Miraculously, she survived.
And I’d like to emphasize the *miracle* in her survival.
She recovered from her injuries in England, where she is still living in refuge. Last week, the Taliban renewed their threat against her so long as she remains an outspoken critic of efforts to impose strict Islamic law in Pakistan.
Notice how the horrific deeds of the enemy have rallied the world *for* Malala and her cause.
Notice how that has tremendously frustrated the enemy.
Well, Malala was not awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2013, but did win the next year in 2014. Regardless, she still stands as a truly amazing beacon of peace and justice.
If you have not seen this video clip of her interview with Jon Stewart, stop whatever you are doing right now to watch this:
I doubt you’ve ever seen two more powerful minutes of real-life inspiration.
I guarantee that Malala’s message will make whatever you’re doing at this moment far more meaningful than it was a second ago.
We normally provide tips or insights in this newsletter to help support you in your role as a parent, educator, or student.
Today, I simply ask you to watch Malala’s video. Then, be *intentional.*
If you’re a parent, think about the burden Malala’s parents hold, knowing their daughter is changing the world…at the risk of her life! Malala’s father holds the burden of believing the bullet was meant for him, but instead that bullet was taken by his daughter. (Her father operated a school and opened his classes to girls.) Give your children a couple of extra hugs today in her parents’ honor.
If you’re an educator, even if you are constantly at odds with The System, take a moment to appreciate the gift you and your students have. Sure, we all agree there are better ways to deliver education. (And we’ll get to those soon enough.) But today, let us be thankful that most of us reading this live in countries that hold education as a core, fundamental value.
If you are a student, instead of thinking about how much you hate school today, think about Malala. She was willing to pay the ultimate price in pursuit of an education. It’s hard to imagine, isn’t it? We really have so much for which to be grateful.
One more thing… I’m a Green Bay Packer fan, through and through. But, today, I stand alongside our “arch rivals,” the Minnesota Vikings, in honor of Adrian Peterson and his son. I am horribly saddened by his tragic, senseless loss and extend my sincere condolences to him, his family, and all Vikings fans.
Malala, Adrian Peterson’s son, and the Heros and Angels of Newtown, Connecticut all remind us to live our lives with Intention; an intention that does not take the peace and justice of our children for granted, but instead, holds these virtues in the forefront of our souls.
Be Inspired. Be Intentional!