Three Lessons We Can Learn from the Brave Life (and Quiet Faith) of Sen. John McCain

You would be hard pressed not to find something truly admirable in this man who served so faithfully.

It was only Friday that the family of Senator John McCain announced that he was ceasing treatment for an aggressive form of brain cancer. Today, this American hero is dead at the age of 81.

Regardless of your views of his politics, you would be hard pressed not to find something truly admirable in this man who served faithfully, and with conviction, in American politics for more than 40 years. Today’s CNN article said it this way:

McCain, who has died at the age of 81, was a naval bomber pilot, prisoner of war, conservative maverick, giant of the Senate, twice-defeated presidential candidate and an abrasive American hero with a twinkle in his eye.

Since so many can talk about his courage and his views, I thought I’d take a different approach.

McCain did not talk a lot about his faith, but he was a believer. He held to his convictions and his understanding of the humanity of all in good times and bad. And, he sought to live his life with passion and urgency as he fought for the good of others.

You can read about his accomplishments in news outlets around the world, but as I consider his life, I am struck by some personal lessons that I—and I believe all of us—can learn as we seek to live our own lives with passion and urgency.

According to the CNN article, in a recent memoir, McCain said this about the way he lived his life:

It’s been quite a ride. I’ve known great passions, seen amazing wonders, fought in a war, and helped make peace. I’ve lived very well and I’ve been deprived of all comforts. I’ve been as lonely as a person can be and I’ve enjoyed the company of heroes. I’ve suffered the deepest despair and experienced the highest exultation. I made a small place for myself …

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