A Scout is brave. He is courageous. He is bold. He is adventurous. He is fearless.
Brave Enough to Conquer Fear
Fear is often just a figment of our imagination. In the classic Christmas movie, “Home Alone,” Kevin is left alone in his family’s house. He has to venture into the basement to do laundry when he hears the furnace turn on. He fear takes over and he imagines the furnace demon-talking, then he flies back up stairs.
Believe me, there is nothing scarier than being in a dark basement alone. Personally, I was terrified of the basement when I was a child. As the youngest, it was always my job to go get green beans from the food storage in our unfinished basement. It didn’t help that my brothers and sisters would tell me to hurry, or the purple bears would get me. More than once they turned the lights off on me and locked the door until my screams alerted my mom to save me.
Eventually I got over my fear of the basement (well, mostly) just as Kevin was able to face his fear of the furnace. Our imagination is strong, but if we learn to be brave, the fear of basements, furnaces, purple bears, or even heights seem conquerable.
Scouting helps boys learn to do hard things, even scary things.
Brave Enough to Do the Right Thing
As I pondered what it means to be brave, I thought of another movie. (Spoiler alert!)
In Disney’s Monsters University, at the final competition of the Scare Games, Sulley tampers with the scare simulator, so that Mike gets a high score no matter what he does. Their team wins, but only because Sulley cheated. Mike is so outraged when he finds out, that he wants to prove himself for real in the dangerous human world.
Sulley starts to realize that cheating was wrong thing to do, but telling the truth would mean he would never make it into the scare program. Sulley ultimately decides to tell the truth to the dean and his professor. They are very disappointed in him, and he is denied again into the scare program. Sulley was brave enough to do the right thing even though it was hard.
He shows bravery again when he rushes into the door to the human world to save Mike. By bravely doing the right thing, Sulley saves Mike and they find that they make the perfect team. While both of them are expelled because of the event, their minds are at peace because they courageously did what was right, even when the consequences meant keeping them from their dream, for now.
There are chances to be brave everyday. You can be brave by telling the truth, by being a true friend to someone different, or by living by your standards.
It’s not easy to live the Scout Law and Oath in a world that no longer values these attributes. It’s not easy to stand alone as force for good, but a Scout is brave enough to do the right thing, always.
On the third day of Christmas, a Scout remembers to always be brave.
Author: Melany Gardner | Marketing & Program Assistant, Utah National Parks Council