Resilience is a characteristic that is only authentically revealed in hindsight. One typically does not say, “I am being resilient right now.” Rather, we pause periodically and look back on our lives to order to recognize it. The feeling is usually extremely satisfying because it shows more than a single right choice or a mere short-term burst of spirit but a string of small victories and perseverance that, when viewed broadly, reveal much about a person’s character.
Is the love between a newly married couple stronger on the day of their wedding or after a year, ten years, or fifty years when they have actually experienced together good times and bad, sickness and health? Certainly the older couples who have lived out their vows arguable have deeper affection. Perhaps that is why most people’s favorite part of the Kiss Cam at stadiums is when they show old couples; we are not grossed out by the PDA (public display of affection) but inspired by their longevity and genuine care. My friends in the bleachers at a baseball game discussed it once and a drunk meathead nailed it, “Obviously the love is real because they both are wrinkly.” What I think he meant is that the love was more than skin deep and the couple had shown spirit, determination, fortitude, chutzpah, and courage.
For me, running and faith both demand resilience. We just keeping going forward and can occasionally afford ourselves the pleasure of reflecting. What a great feeling when one approaches the finish line and hears the crowd cheering them on to finish. Similarly, the hope is that at the end of our journey, we will hear God say, “Well done, my faithful servant.” In the meantime, we forge ahead and keep trying to do the next right thing.