The Fight Of Your Life
Have you heard the song: "Life's A Dance"? The chorus proclaims: "Life's a dance you learn as you go; Sometimes you lead, sometimes you follow; Don't worry about what you don't know; Life's a dance you learn as you go." I like the song just fine, but most of the time I wouldn't describe life as a dance. I envision a dance as enjoyable, exhilarating, and rhythmic. It's pretty and graceful. A good dancer always hears the beat and keeps in step with it. It's fun, and it flows. I don't know about you, but that doesn't sound like my life!
I think I would describe life as a good fight -- you know, like Rocky. I'm in the ring, and I'm fighting. Some rounds I'm on top, and I feel like I can fight forever. Look out world, here I come! Other times, I'm getting my butt kicked -- sometimes worse than others. The world just keeps punching and swinging, and I can't seem to punch back. I'm tired, and I can just barely hold on. Those are the times I wish the damn bell would ring and give me a break. Wouldn't it be nice if that happened? Then I could sit down in the corner where that guy would wipe me down and, in a calm, supportive, but firm manner, whisper encouraging words and instructions in my ear. We all need those times or we could never make it through all the rounds. The fight is long.
If life's a fight, we need to train like boxers. Otherwise, we won't have the strength, agility, or stamina to endure. And we'll know it, so we'll either avoid the fight or go into it timidly and expecting failure. Rocky was just a bum in the ring swinging for some cash. He didn't take it too seriously at first. He had some crude physical strength going on -- enough to get him in the ring -- but he didn't really train for the fight at first. It was tough, and the payout reflected his lack of training. After a time he was kicked out and replaced by someone who took the game seriously and trained hard. The manager of his gym pretty much told him he was a waste of a life. Then he was asked to fight a champion. Suddenly, he had to take the game seriously or he was going to look like a fool on national television.
Queue in the Rocky that we remember -- stretching, drinking raw eggs, running night and day, beating up slabs of meat, working out in the gym, doing one-arm pushups, listening to the advice of his trainers, and finally running the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. He trained hard -- it had to be that way. But that wasn't all he needed. He was given a dog to keep him company when he went out running. He had a good manager to direct him, and he had the loving support and encouragement of friends and his community. Let's not forget that he had some damn good inspirational music to boot!
Life is no different. We need a good manager to direct us. Mine directs me through prayer. We need company, support, and encouragement. We absolutely must train -- including exercise and eating healthy foods. We must prepare our minds as well as our bodies. The two cannot be separated because the fight requires both mental and physical strength and agility. We have to take it all seriously and not just be bums in the ring.
Let's wake up each day to prepare for the ring. We'll train hard by exercising our bodies and minds. We'll consult with our "manager," take others with us if we get bored and lonely, and invoke the support of our family, friends, and community. Don't forget a corner man. All are needed if we want to succeed. And what the heck -- turn on the Rocky theme song if you need some extra inspiration! Whatever you do -- don't throw in the towel.
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