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Where did that come from - Where there's a will, there's a way
Stan St. Clair

Now here’s one my mama “told me 100 times if she told me once!” She wanted to make sure I never gave up on something that I needed or wanted to do even when it seemed like it was impossible. 

It goes right along with “if at first you don’t succeed try, try again!” And it has been in use for a long, long time.

The earliest reference to a version of it is in Jacula Prudentum, or Outlandish Proverbs and Sentences by George Herbert in 1640. It is number 730: “To him that will, wais are not wanting.”

William C. Hazlitt used our modern version in New Monthly Magazine published in London in February 1822: “Where there’s a will, there’s a way — I said so to myself, as I walked down Chancery-lane … to inquire … where the fight the next day was to be.”

In the 20th century there are plenty of examples including this citation in Good Night Little Spy by German-born Canadian author Eric Koch in 1979: “I’ve no idea how it can be done. But where there’s a will, there’s a way.”

If we can just remember this in today’s fast-paced world we will accomplish much more. It is so easy to just follow the path of least resistance. But persistence pays good dividends. 

So if you practice this, you teach your children and grandchildren by example and our world will be a better place in which to live. Have a great 2021!

If you would like to know the origin of a favorite expression, text the author at 931-212-3303 or email him at