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What Learning How to Defend Myself Has Taught Me

Updated: Mar 14, 2019


"Then Jesus said to him, 'Put your sword back into its sheath, for all who take the sword will perish by the sword. Do you think that I cannot call upon my Father and he will not provide me at this moment with more than twelve legions of angels? But then how would the scriptures be fulfilled which say that it must come to pass in this way?'"

~Matthew 26: 52-54

"Those passing by reviled him, shaking their heads and saying, 'Aha! You who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save yourself by coming down from the cross.' Likewise the chief priests, with the scribes, mocked him among themselves and said, 'He saved others; he cannot save himself. Let the Messiah, the King of Israel, come down now from the cross that we may see and believe.' Those who were crucified with him also kept abusing him."

~Mark 15:29-32

This semester, I have been taking a Hapkido class on Monday nights. For those of you who have never heard of Hapkido, it is a type of Korean street fighting that serves the purpose of finishing a fight as quickly and efficiently as possible. (My teacher is a black belt in Hapkido, so I feel like I’m learning this from a fairly credible source.)

Recently, Hapkido has gotten really interesting: we’ve been learning how to fall properly (yes, you read that right) and take down opponents with different types of grips and holds. And I have to say—it’s been rather fun to learn how to defend myself. I’m not big into Hapkido itself, but I like knowing that I’ll be able to physically defend myself if needed.

Yesterday in class, we were trying to learn how to fall, and I did not do it correctly. It’s all part of the learning process, but I should have been a bit more careful when practicing, as I now have an extremely sore neck from falling too hard without proper technique. This got me thinking: knowing how to defend myself won’t stop me from getting hurt—it’ll only help. If I ever need to use what I’ve learned in Hapkido, there’s no guarantee that I won’t walk away without scrapes or bruises or something worse—there’s only the guarantee that I know a couple of tricks up my sleeve that may help.

Jesus is the Son of God. He’s the Savior, the Christ, and our Lord. And despite having the knowledge, power, and right to use his titles, he went to the cross anyway, bleeding and hurt beyond what we can imagine. Jesus is our prime example that having certain advantages in this life doesn’t make you immune to its pain. Simply knowing how to defend yourself won’t stop you from getting hurt—it only helps.

We read in the Gospels about people who questioned why Jesus didn’t take himself down from the cross, or why he didn’t defend himself if he was King. We know the answer is because Jesus came to live among us to save us, and he did so by dying for us. But given what we know about humans, do you think we would have listened to his defenses anyway? Think about it: the Son of God tells us all straight to our faces that he is the one, true Lord, and that His Father in Heaven is the one, true God. Did we listen? Nope—we put him on a cross. We put GOD on a cross. And Jesus could have easily prevented that kind of pain for himself…but he didn’t.

The paths we choose in life can easily bring us pain, even if we know beforehand that we can prevent it. Let that truth serve as a reminder that only God can help us when we are in pain and when we are hurt. Let it serve as a reminder that just because we are in pain does not mean that God isn’t there and that he doesn’t have a bigger plan. Historically speaking, he has an awesome plan for each and every one of us.

Knowing how to defend ourselves in life won’t stop us from getting hurt, but having God as our defense definitely helps. And until it’s time for me to leave this earth, I’m going to defend HIs name—even using Hapkido if necessary.

Your Laughing Sister,


Check out the STRENGTH and WISDOM quotes pages for more inspiration!


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I'm a native Michigander and fierce city gal. Armed with my Bible and favorite pair of jeans, my passion is to help young women and girls connect with God through a courageous and faith-filled life. I also love photography, reading, and archery competitions with

my husband, Thomas.

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