Being a lawyer is a noble profession, principally because its about helping other people, about service –selfless service.
I had a friend who was an Israeli army lawyer and he was talking about doing a battle army investigation. Doing a battlefield investigation is like running a marathon – its incredibly painful and it feels like it would never end – but it is absolutely essential that you do not stop running, because the only thing that’s standing between between you and fulfilling your destiny of serving others is this exam. And I’m confident and Kaplan is confident, that if you keep running even when you get tired and even when you get discouraged, you keep running and you do everything they advise you to do – you put in the work, you will be successful in this exam. And you will find yourself in one of the most important functions in our society – that is standing next to a client when everything is going wrong, and you are the only person between them and justice. That is what lawyers do. Lawyers stand for justice. And justice is defined one lawyer and one client at a time. That’s your destiny. So don’t think about how much work you have in front of you, but all the work you’ve done so far to get here – and you’ve got a little bit more to go.
And remember a lesson I learned when I was a solider: “The more you sweat in peacetime, the less you bleed in wartime.” The harder you work now, the easier this exam is going to be. I wish you the best of luck because I want you to be out there helping people who are waiting for you, as soon as you possibly you can – and that’s all about mastering this exam .
One of the most inspiring law teachers I’ve had is not even someone I’ve met in person. I’ve either watched him via live stream or through recorded videos. He’s a former military man, so he spoke to us in terms of mission and objective. And I really liked his saying, “The more you sweat in peacetime, the less you bleed in wartime.” I’m studying for the Bar exam now and today is a day filled with his lectures. And I just want to record here what he said, because I know it’ll continue to inspire me for the days, and weeks to come.
Being a lawyer is a great calling and a noble profession. You’ve worked so hard to get to this point. There is only one obstacle standing between you and the people out there who are waiting for you.
There are clients out there that you don’t even know that are waiting for you to get that license so that you can make a difference in their lives.
I tell my students that when we try to define Justice it seems nebulous but the lesson I learned as a lawyer– justice is defined one lawyer and one client at a time – that is your destiny. There is only one obstacle standing between you and that goal, and that’s the bar exam.
The more you sweat in peacetime, the less you bleed in wartime. Your success on the bar is going to be directly contingent on how hard you work to prepare yourself.
If you get tired or discouraged or bored, remind yourself as to why you’re doing this.
For people who want to be lawyers, this is not about us. There is no more powerful phrase than standing up in a courtroom and saying, “I represent __name__.” What that means is that you serve others, so this entire endeavor from the beginning of law school to where you are now is to prepare yourself to serve others. So if you get discouraged, find the motivation by remembering that someone is waiting for you and you need to accomplish this task. And if you work hard and you do everything the curriculum tells us to do, we’re confident that you’ll get to that high ground and you’ll be practicing law before you know it.
The Atlantic’s commentary on the Pope’s encyclical
…Brave Pope Francis. Better to be a priest than a president.
May I still remember the bright hours that found me walking over the silent hills of my childhood, or dreaming on the margin of a quiet river, when a light glowed within me, and I promised my early God to have courage amid the tempests of the changing years.
Spare me from bitterness and from the sharp passions of unguarded moments. May I not forget that poverty and riches are of the spirit.
Though the world knows me not, may my thoughts and actions be such as shall keep me friendly with myself.
Lift up my eyes from the earth, and let me not forget the uses of the stars. Forbid that I should judge others lest I condemn myself.
Let me not follow the clamor of the world, but walk calmly in my path.
Give me a few friends who will love me for what I am; and keep ever burning before my vagrant steps the kindly light of hope.
And though age and infirmity overtake me, and I come not within sight of the castle of my dreams, teach me still to be thankful for life, and for time’s olden memories that are good and sweet; and may the evening’s twilight find me gentle still.
The Paradoxical Commandments
by Dr. Kent M. Keith
- People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.
- If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.
- If you are successful, you win false friends and true enemies.
- The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.
- Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway.
- The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds.
Think big anyway.
- People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs.
Fight for a few underdogs anyway.
- What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
- People really need help but may attack you if you do help them.
Help people anyway.
- Give the world the best you have and you’ll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you have anyway.