Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage (Alfred Lansing)
by Rebekah Bachman
Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage shares the true story of Ernest Shackleton who set sail in 1914,
planning to cross Antarctica via the South Pole with a 27-man crew. It is said, many had responded to the following recruitment notice: “Men wanted for hazardous journey. Small wages. Bitter cold. Long months of complete darkness. Constant danger. Safe return doubtful. Honor and recognition, in case of success. —Ernest Shackleton.” It’s an amazing account of leadership, determination, teamwork, and perseverance told in such a compelling way that I had a difficult time putting it down. Admittedly, I’m drawn to books of this nature – books that highlight the strength and resilience of humanity in response to adversity.
While most of us will never find ourselves on an adventure that becomes quite as treacherous or harsh as that of these twenty-seven men, we do experience hardships and obstacles that deter us from our plans and may, at times, seem insurmountable. Daily, my path crosses with those who are facing their own incredible voyages which threaten to push them off-course because of their reactions—or lack thereof. Shackleton’s responses in the face of despair and disagreement, as well as jubilation and excitement, are worthy of reflection and application in our own little corners of the world.
Through accounts such as this, I’m reminded that we can endure more than we ever imagine with the right people. Surrounding ourselves with those who consistently think of others, strategically plan for success, and believe in the strength of a team, makes a tremendous difference in how we respond in times of catastrophe.
The beginning of a new year is a perfect time to be grateful for those in our lives who exhibit these traits and aspire to be such for others. Will you join me?