To celebrate our friend Victoria’s pregnancy (it’s a girl!), we gathered last Wednesday afternoon at Manna House. We ate cake; she opened presents; we took photos.
Victoria hadn’t planned on this third child, but she is grateful for her, along with the two boys she already has.
Life hasn’t been easy the past few years for Victoria. She’s coped with losses and betrayals and misfortunes.
She could have turned bitter. But she hasn’t.
How We Respond
What makes some people resilient and others fall apart?
Hint: It’s not their circumstances.
Two people can have the same circumstances, yet have totally different responses.
When problems arise for us, how are we framing them?
- That life is unfair?
- That it’s all too much?
- That we never have enough?
I turned on the TED Radio Hour podcast the morning of Victoria’s shower as I was making breakfast. I had begun a slow slide into self-pity at signs of a new infection when I had so much to do in my week.
As I listened to the episode of “Crisis and Response,” I heard voices . . .
- of Ken Kamler trapped in a horrific snowstorm on Everest
- of Matt Weinstein losing his life’s savings to Bernie Madoff
- of Kitra Cahana sitting with her father after his massive stroke
They each had been in harder circumstances than I could even imagine. Their crises differed from each other, but their responses were the same:
Instead of drowning in circumstances, they carved a way through them.
It’s Not the Thing
“People are not disturbed by things, but by the views they take of them.”
I watch Victoria doing it, finding joy at the new life kicking inside her, even as she faces hard challenges in her growing family.
I pray she’ll keep hearing a voice: that deeper Voice calling out to her, to us. He tells us we’re more than our circumstances. That if we’ll unclench our fists and engage our hearts, we’ll touch the peace of his presence.
After all, the battle isn’t our circumstances; it’s how we view our circumstances.
When we welcome God into the circumstance, even when the circumstance doesn’t change, we can.
None of this fazes us because Jesus loves us.
I’m absolutely convinced that nothing—nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow,
high or low, thinkable or unthinkable—absolutely nothing can get between us and God’s love because of the way that Jesus our Master has embraced us.
Romans 8:37-39 (The Message)
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Is there a situation you’ve been trying too hard to control? Is there another way to think about it? Please share in the comments.
- When you want to, you’ll be enabled to
- Were They Really the “Good Old Days”? Depends on Who You Ask