The difference between courage and honor

Courage sounds like a noble thing to have. In many cases it is noble and right, like say, military combat, speaking in front of people, standing up for what is right, facing a fear and many other similar examples. Courage can also be stupid. Like trying something you shouldn’t be trying just because your friends dared you. The wrong kind of courage happens more when you are younger than after you have some age on you. One example from my youth (there are many to choose from) I was around 19 years old and that winter it snowed about 5 inches in Atlanta. Me and my best bud decided it would be a great idea to tie a ski rope to the back of a truck and use water skis in the Winn Dixie parking lot. See what I mean, it took courage but it was the wrong kind. Needless to say, our little skiing venture didn’t end well and we came close to being in the newspaper under the obituaries.

Honor is an entirely different thing. When you act honorably, it is right, pure, transparent and honest. It builds you up on the inside and edifies your self-esteem. It means that you are doing what is best and don’t care who gets the credit. It is the process of doing what is right even though no one is watching. When you strive for honor, it builds credibility in the belief that doing the right thing is the right thing to do. It is like seeing someone that needs some help and helping them without being judgmental. It is called grace. It is like finding someone’s purse or wallet and doing the right thing by finding its owner and returning it. So courage is a great thing and in many cases the edge you need in various situations but it can also be misinterpreted as wisdom and boldness. It is important to know the difference.

It is my personal opinion that in every situation if you asked yourself, “What is the honorable way to handle this?” you would know the answer without hesitation. If this is true, then we all have honor within us and we all know what honor looks like. Therefore if we already know what it is to act honorable, the only decision left is deciding to do it.

In life we all should aim high, be truthful, act honorably and be noble. KT

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