The earthquake which devastated Mexico City a few years ago had saddened the hearts of many with scenes and stories of human suffering.  But ironically, this unbelievable tragedy had periodically gladdened the hearts of everyone with stories of heroism and hope.  One such event was the rescue of two little babies, a boy and a girl.  Both were buried for several days in the rubble of the hospital where they were born.  Rescuers were surprised to find them, not only alive, but in remarkably good condition and crying at the tops of their voices.  A physician interviewed at the scene said, “All babies are born fighters, and it was that fighting spirit which helped to keep them alive.” 

If that doctor was correct in his analysis – and I suspect he was – that means each of us was also a born fighter.  But what I am wondering is the condition of that fighting spirit in you and me.  Have we still got it?  Are we putting it to its proper use?  Let’s face it, life in this world is seldom a picnic.  More often than not, it is a struggle.  The world around us is discouraging.  Added to that is an array of personal problems.  Some are physically handicapped.  Some are unemployed.  Some are disappointed in ambition.  Some are disillusioned in love.  Many are whipped by moral failure.  The accumulated result of all this is that many are sometimes tempted to give up the fight.  In the secret places of the human heart, where even our closest friends cannot see, some of us have just about lost our fighting spirit.  We have started to ask those fatal questions – What’s the use? Why bother? What does it matter? 

In contrast to that, Our Holy Father, during his visit to New York, pointed our attention to the fact that we must be brave.  He kept reminding all Americans that there are few things in life that we need much more than a fighting spirit.  We may lose a lot of battles in this secular, materialistic  society, but we have not lost the war as long as we have the will to fight on.  But when that is gone, everything is lost until and unless we can get it back.  And Our Holy Father reminds us that if we keep our lives in line with Jesus, we can indeed get that fighting spirit back and we will be victorious. 

I am aware, of course, that there may be someone facing a situation so heartbreaking that were we dealing with that individual, we would not be talking this way.  Instead, we would be trying, if possible, to lift some of those burdens.  Nevertheless, our Holy Father is convinced that most of us can do something worthwhile with our situation, if we do not lose our fighting spirit.

Someone may be wondering what all this has to do with our Christian faith.  The right answer to that question is “everything.”  Make no mistake about it, Jesus was a fighter, not with swords, not with fists, but a fighter nonetheless.  He was fighting for His cause.  He had taken His stand, and He would not back down.  So our Christian faith will be well spent if we can join that proud company of Christians and go out to face life with renewed courage.  Our Christian faith ought to do that for you and me.  Keep your lives focused on Jesus and be brave.  Christ has given us the truth that “He has overcome the world.”