Cascade Mountain in Banff, AB
Celebrating Canada’s 150th Anniversary
Photo taken by the author

en-dur-ance (noun)
the power to withstand pain or hardships; the ability or strength to continue despite fatigue, stress, or other adverse conditions.

I once heard someone say “the body is designed to endure suffering.” For whatever reason this thought has stayed with me since that time and the more I think on it the more I realize how true it is. This has been true in my own life as I have gone through many challenges and obstacles. This one line seems to encapsulate those experiences and at times I wonder how was I able to endure and keep on going during those difficult times? I believe this also rings true with the difficult experiences other people go through. The Rwandan genocide of ’94 and the recent Syrian refugee crisis are what come to mind. How is it possible for these people groups to keep on going in the midst of their world being completely uprooted?

Answer, in part: the body is designed to endure suffering. Call it the power of the human mind or the strong will that each one of us has, the fact remains that I have, and these people have, continued to live and endure through these trying times. The song “Stronger”, by Kelly Clarkson, comes to mind: “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger / Stand a little taller … / What doesn’t kill you makes a fighter.” It’s almost as if someone from above has put a switch into the human body enabling it to withstand and endure the hardships that come as part of the not-yet-perfect world we live in.

In the end, the human body is a lot stronger than perhaps we give it credit for. Ironically, this statement is being played out and tested every day right before our eyes, whether we are aware of it or not. Whether it’s happening to us, or to those around us, or to those we do not know across geographical lines and boundaries, our bodies are continually enduring suffering. So reader, just hold on and remember those difficult times you have faced and came through on the other side.

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