Embracing Difficulties

No Struggle, No StrengthI was listening to a person sharing the difference her faith made. She said a number of times that all she wanted really was to feel that the people around her wanted her in their lives. So she did what they asked and ended up being abused.

I have heard this story too often, and I bet you have also.

Then she said something I had never thought of. It was as a result of her struggles that the realized that the parent she could trust was God.

I know the theology part, but it was the through the struggles part that struck me. You see, I rather fear struggles because I wonder, “Will this even end?” I also resent them. “Sure I can manage this in my life, but why should I have to?”

The light went on. The lessons in my life that have changed how I act. The ones that have encouraged me or taught me how to encourage others. All the important ones have involved risk. Most have involved discomfort and sometimes pain.

So like her, why not welcome them? You see, she had embraced her struggles because of the positive value they brought her, wisdom and the presence of God in her life.

These things, hard things, come into all of our lives. In God’s providence they produce good results. Though disconcerting when they happened, none have overwhelmed me in the end. In fact a wise person said to me once, “The only way to gain confidence is to attempt difficult things.”

My life is very different than hers. But I want people to be happy that I am in their life like she does. I think that is pretty universally human. God’s assurance that life is a good gift has helped me over and over to look for the solution. I am welcomed in His life and in His family. I need only discover how. And if I stop to ask, He will help me find the place He created for me.