The Way of the Warrior 1. Justice and Courage

01898Have you ever stood up and done the right thing? Did it cost you something? Did you stand alone?

       We all live by a code. The samurai had an amazing code that their feudal society was based on. Justice was the first law and courage the next. It may sound funny, but for North Americans to understand the concepts of honor, we may have to dip into other societies to see what it really looks like.

       I was on the playground and came around the corner to find some kid picking on my little brother. That went against the Kope code. Blood runs pretty thick. I pulled him away from Ryan and told him to cool off. I guess his temper got the best of him and he started spin kicking me. Sadly, his “skills” weren’t up to samurai standards and his kicks were terribly slow, so I caught his foot. I didn’t really want to mess him up so I just slowly pushed him over backwards. That didn’t work so he tried it again, and again, and again.
        We do that too. We try to spin kick our way out of trouble, or poor behavior. We try to upset the balance of our circumstances, but it is our own status quo (or balance) that needs upsetting first. If you won’t do it for yourself, something or someone will do it for you. A relationship will fall off the rails, or an unexpected expense will bring the evidence that we are living above our means to the forefront.
        How do you and I normally approach things that need changing? I don’t know about you, but I often come at it from the point of view of “if that person would only see things the way I see them, we’d get along better”. That is a very one-way conversation that normally accomplishes nothing. Then the spin kicking continues, we just say things louder and more often.
         In Canada, we rarely take the circumstances around us as a sign to change OURSELVES. We get politely angry at the people involved and place blame quickly to avoid our own responsibility to improve. It’s certainly easier in the short run.
         The way of honour is the long way. My dad taught me how poor it is to let problems stew and try to pass them off. By the time most of us deal with things, we have no idea what the original issue was anyways. Talk about unproductive….
               So try this for me and see if it works:
     The next time you find yourself in conflict or a negative circumstance ask yourself “What would I have to do to get better at this?”
               Maybe that was the point in the first place?
Corey Kope

Pastor. Father of 4 beauties. Devoted husband, Liverpool fan, and Jesus follower.

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