The real Patch Adams
The real Patch Adams (Facebook)

On a lazy Friday afternoon (my day off), I watched the semi-old movie Patch Adams. I loved many things about the movie (have seen it several times before), but on this viewing, the most impactful part was the words on the screen at the end of the movie:

“Currently there is a waiting list of over 1,000 physicians who are willing to leave their practices to join Patch.”

1. Be willing to work the hardest. Patch was was one of the top in his class. He loved learning and earned the respect of his colleagues by his eagerness to learn his field. We can’t accomplish a thing without working hard. Good luck comes to those who work hard. Patch understood that. We have to as well. If you’re a leader, you gotta work!

2. Never allow the norm to change your passion. Patch’s peers and those in authority saw him as a threat to the medical field because of his unorthodox methods of really loving and genuinely caring for those he touched. Patch didn’t let that stop him. He was willing to work hard and exercise his passion regardless. Don’t let the talkers around you stop you from not being “normal.” Do what God has called you to do—what He’s put inside of you!

3. Don’t stop, no matter what. When Patch was about to graduate, the dean denied his license and was not going to allow him to graduate. But Patch went to the medical board to appeal his case, not for the position but because of his passion. Problems are going to come if you’re leading toward something good. Don’t let the problems derail you. Nothing good comes without pain. Don’t let it stop you, leader!

Artie Davis is the pastor at Cornerstone Community Church in Orangeburg, S.C. He heads the Comb Network and the Sticks Conference. He speaks and writes about leadership, ministry, church planting and cultural diversity in the church. You can find his blog at or catch him on Twitter @artiedavis.

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