Actions Speak Louder

Yesterday I read a remarkable, true story about William Kamkwamba, a young man from Malawi, Africa. William was kicked out of school at age 14 because his family could not pay the $80 annual school fee. Instead of becoming dejected or angry, William began to spend time at the library. When he noticed a picture of a windmill, William got the idea to build one. He realized that the windmill could provide a little electricity and pump water, both of which were in short supply in his community.

Now in his early 20s, William has written a book about his experiences. This Wednesday, October 7, you can see him on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. To learn more about William’s work or support his efforts, visit his personal blog. He is also a guest blogger on Huffington Post.

I’ve spent an undue share of my life feeling stuck in a rut, wondering how to achieve my dreams and find good, meaningful work. Sometimes thinking is the precursor to creative work. But let’s be honest. It can also be nothing more than fuel for the ego, an excuse to avoid trying the gifts we possess and doing the work we are meant to do. Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, “Thought is the blossom; language the bud; action the fruit behind it.” I am so moved by this story of a young person whose curiosity and recognition of a need led him to act, despite scarcity of emotional or financial support.

May your dreams continue to bear fruit, William Kamkwamba!

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