Returning from teaching in Singapore, a man posted on my timeline, “I watched a video of you losing to my master at world championships in 1993. You didnt learn humility to God then and you havent by holding up your genetic flaws with pride. You lost then and your still a loser. You embarrass youre country. There is no honor in flaws. There meant to show you how little you really are but your to blind to see it.”
You watched a video of only one loss but you haven’t seen the many hundreds of my losses - on and off the mat - that weren’t filmed. However, you’re correct: those losses did not teach me how insignificant I am. Instead, what you see as defeats and defects, taught me how truly big hearted each and everyone of us CAN be.
Yes, BECAUSE of God’s gifts (which you view as flaws and failures), I returned to win world championships several times over; despite that single loss you watched from twenty years ago. But my real victories are not on the mat. They’re in my heart. Because I have been so often beaten, and yet chose to get up again and again to learn from the experience, God has taught me how to grow an indomitable spirit.
You may think you know someone’s name and story but you don’t know their purpose and passion. As Jack Canfield wrote, “Most of life is on-the-job training. Some of the most important things can only be learned in the process of doing them. You do something and you get feedback - about what works and about what doesn’t. If you don’t do anything for fear of doing it wrong, poorly or badly, you never get any feedback, and therefore you never get to improve.”
The only fighters who’ve never lost - never competed. Because they never receive the critical feedback of loss, they remain bitter and small, snidely deprecating others. As long as you continue to view other people’s losses as defeats, your growth stays stunted - impotent to access your true perseverance.
My opponents may defeat my body without my consent, but they can defeat my spirit only with my consent. That is how you face loss and remain undefeatable. True champions of the heart face life’s inevitable losses, and persevere to fight again and again, despite repeated loss. They refuse to submit to smallness of spirit; to falling and staying down. That is a real undefeatable champion.
Life humbles us not to paralyze us but to empower us. If you take the chance to reframe what you once considered failures and flaws, and instead - see only life’s lessons and gifts… and transform both your attitude toward others and your perspective on your own life.