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Tough Skin

Tough skin. I remember first time going through this not so comfortable process of developing my “tough skin” when I learned a little bit of Muay Thai in Canada, back in 2014.

Haha! I just realised some of you may not know what Muay Thai is. Also known as “The art of 8 limbs,” it’s a deadly form of martial arts from Thailand, that combines the use of your fists, elbows, legs and knees. The most distinct aspect of it is the toughness of the fighters. These guys as ROCK HARD. They will break a baseball bat or cut down a banana tree with their kicks. What amazes me more is how they can endure the same blows on their bodies like they’ve simply been slapped. TOUGH SKIN!!!

So! Tough skin, as it was called in the gym I trained in, was a procedure when the students would stand with their hands behind their heads, and our partners or trainer would hit us on our ribs and thighs with the leather training pads. This is meant to condition the body to be able to withstand punches and kicks and allow a fighter to keep fighting back. With time, it takes more than mere punches and kicks to put a warrior down. TOUGH SKIN!!!

I was watching Black-Ish the other day (Here comes another review 😛). For those who watch it, you know Andre Johnson, right? And his son, Junior, right? Junior was being bullied at school and Dre helped him find a way to fight back without getting physical. He introduced him to the ancient art of roasting, and Boy! Was he good? He destroyed the bullies one by one, until he found some dirt on his biggest foe. But, when they came face to face, he decided to let it go, and got sucker punched for it….in front of the whole school.

Well, I thought about what you said about roasting only people who can handle it. And I knew I can handle it from all the years of you dumping on me at every possible moment.

It’s amazing how he took the high road and decided to let it go for his enemy’s sake. He had been “tough skinned” by his dad all his life to the point where the school laughing at him didn’t affect him at all.

So it is with life itself, and the struggles we endure. Those who have gone through the pain, and healed, always come out the other side stronger. The skin has been toughened, and that’s why the same thing doesn’t affect you again the same way it did before. And, that’s why your next struggles are harder than the previous. You have been built to withstand them and they are there to take your endurance a notch higher.

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The arrows and spears thrown at you just bounce off and deflect back towards your haters and enemies as you keep moving forward fighting through the storms. Rejections don’t mean anything anymore because now you know yourself and your worth, and you keep going until you get that “Yes”. You laugh off words meant to discourage you because you’ve looked back and realised that you’re stronger than you thought.

And now, you even welcome new challenges with excitement because you know there’s something much better and greater than what you have to go through on the other side.

You’ve made it this far, right? TOUGH SKIN!!!

Romans 5: 3–4; 3 Not only that, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope.