How Hard You Get Hit

  • \\ 2 CORINTHIANS 4:8-9*

As a father, I've always considered the most important lesson to teach my children is the principle of perseverance -- staying in the battle as long as it takes to win, getting back up after you get knocked down, trying as many times as necessary.

There's a scene in the movie Rocky Balboa that's about this -- Rocky is teaching this lesson to his son, Robert. This is the final movie in the Rocky series; he's now past his prime (for an athlete), in his fifties, a little punchy, and has just decided to attempt a comeback. Robert tries to talk him out of it, saying it isn't fair to him, that he is trying to build a life for himself, and he's tired of living in the old man's shadow. He tells Rocky how this will hold him back. Rocky says to him...

"Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain't all sunshine and rainbows. It's a very mean and nasty place. And I don't care how tough you are. It will beat you to your knees and keep you permanently there if you let it.

"You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life, but it ain't about how hard you hit, it's about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward, how much you can take and keep moving forward. That's how winning is done.

"Now if you know what you are worth, go out and get what you are worth, but you gotta be willing to take the hits and not pointing fingers, saying you ain't where you want to be because of him or her or anybody. Cowards do that, and that ain't you. You're better than that."

It's about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. Jesus promised (though it's a promise we're not particular eager to claim) that in this world we will have tribulation. The rain will fall. The question is, how will we handle it?

Paul wrote to the Corinthians, "We often suffer, but we are never crushed. Even when we don't know what to do, we never give up. In times of trouble, God is with us, and when we get knocked down, we get up again." (2 Corinthians 4:8-9)

Dads, let's make this the legacy we pass on to our children.

--Steve May, Monday Memo, June 11, 2007

[dvd cue for Rocky Balboa scene: 101:00]

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