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Hardship is a blessing

Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance. -Romans 5:1-3

What keeps us going to Tae Kwon Do? Is it because it is fun? Because we have friends? Is it a hobby to keep healthy? Tae Kwon Do is hard work and requires physical, mental and spiritual endurance. When I teach a hard class, where all my students are barely breathing and barely standing; I am teaching them perseverance, endurance and patience. The hardest things in our lives are painful and make us suffer, but they build our spiritual strength. God gives us hardships to make us strong, so we can survive and see the good in the darkness. If you take Tae Kwon Do to make your body strong, to give yourself physical strength, you will soon see that your body and physical strength have limits. If you are physically strong and mentally weak, you will not be able to handle mental and spiritual trials. As you get older, you physically can't do certain things. However, if you have self-motivation to build your mental and spiritual being, your potential is infinite.

For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live. -Romans 8:13

When you just live by what your body wants, your mental and spiritual self will starve. When your body gives out, you have nothing but an empty shell. The first step is to fight yourself, your ego, your selfishness, and your own darkness. This is the true Tae Kwon Do self-defense. You defend yourself mentally and spiritually. You build your fruits of the Holy Spirit: love, patience, virtue, humility, etc. Your knowledge and experience are tools to help others and to fight evil.

Build your Holy Spirit because its power is unlimited.

I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. -Romans 8:18

In class, sometimes we wonder why we train so hard, why do we push to learn and persevere, even though we are injured or in pain. We train and workout, even when our pain is great. But after class is done, we feel relieved, relaxed and almost painless because we persevered. Our pain and suffering on this earth is because of our own sin. Now is hard, but our future in heaven is glorious. Sometimes we only think of our present misfortunes. When we focus on materialism and our selfish desires, we tend to hurt ourselves and hurt others. We tend to blame others for our problems instead of fixing our own problems. There are terrible sins and wickedness that haunt our world, but we must embrace the Holy Spirit to see hope and love. The blessings from God are hardships that help us grow in patience and love.

And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God. -Romans 8:27

Tae Kwon Do is fighting our own self. We are blocking the anger, hate and ego that we have. We are punching and kicking the evil in our hearts. We are freeing our spirit to be humble, kind and respectful. As Tae Kwon Do practitioners, we are leaders, teachers and students. Like Christ's followers, we must travel the righteous path. God knows what lives in our hearts. He can see inside our soul. He knows if we are good or evil.

Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law. -Romans 13:8

If there is one thing Tae Kwon Do can give you, it is patience. With patience and love, the Ten Commandments would be done. Black belts, Tae Kwon Do practitioners, brothers and sisters, forgive each other. Don't hold back love. I see people who were once friends and now they have grudges. Everyone's hearts hold some darkness, but we must choose light over dark. We have to remember that our mental and spiritual self will go much further than our body. Even when we are so tired, we have to try harder. Love is the command. Love one another.

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