As a guy I might be biased, and then I might be further biased because I am a sucker for inspirational things. Regardless, I love battle analogies.
I had just finished viewing a large part of the HBO series, Band of Brothers. The film intrigues and grasps. Throughout the duration I found myself viewing the series from an analytical perspective; why did I find the film so interesting? Was it because I was a guy with a passion for WWII history? That is probably a large part of my interest, but I postulated that there had to be something more general, more common that would accommodate a vast range of demographics. Perhaps, I thought, battles and war entirely reflect the human condition.
We live in a constant state of battle. Certainly, the degree of battle varies, but we all, when our lives are shaved into their simplest state, live in war. A war film puts our experience into visual, and I think that when such a film can effectively and accurately portray a war, it drops a small treasure, hint, or reminder of ourselves and humanity.
I don’t speak from experience, nor do I speak as if I would know, but I would venture to say that soldiers often experience what we might call “being pushed up against the wall”. I think it is in those situations that we disregard trivial thoughts, and we prioritize essential goals and matters. When we have no room to wiggle, we don’t waste time wiggling. Boogie down and persevere.
Any speak on overcoming hardships is so legit! Hebrews 12 oozes with this kind of talk: Hebrews 12:1, “. . . let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,” and Hebrews 12:7, “Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father?”. Overcoming hardships is essential to the human condition. Battle analogies are a clear rhetorical representation of the human condition.
Look for the analogies. You can view almost any sport as a battle. Each athlete works with the other for a common cause, defeating the “enemy”. School is a battlefield. Your pen is your weapon, and the lecture hall is your arena. Wrestle with the thoughts, and pin them with your sword.
Life is a battle. I especially believe this in a religious context. C.S Lewis in Mere Christianity described the world as being in enemy occupation.
Enemy-occupied territory — that is what this world is. Christianity is the story of how the rightful king has landed, you might say landed in disguise, and is calling us all to take part in a great campaign of sabotage. When you go to church you are really listening-in to the secret wireless from our friends: that is why the enemy is so anxious to prevent us from going.
The human tragedy that so many of us can see on the television is a reflection of our daily struggles. Those struggles, I believe, define us. They are an inherent characteristic of life and growth, shaping and molding us daily. One day we’ll be without this hassle and burden, but that’s our future. For now, we’ll have to dig into our trenches.