We have great endurance in hardships and in persecutions. We don’t lose courage in a time of stress and calamity. 2 Corinthians 6:4 TPT
Resilience is the ability to adapt and bounce back from difficult life challenges. It allows us to move forward from loss and suffering, even great suffering, and grow from it. Life brings challenges. It just does. In John 16:33, Jesus tells us: I have told you all this so you may have peace in me, here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world. The word for trials and sorrows is the Greek word thlipsis. Pressure, oppression, stress, anguish, tribulation, adversity, affliction, crushing, squashing, squeezing, distress are some words the New Spirit Filled translates the word thlipsis.
Isn’t it encouraging to know Jesus already knows that we will go through these things? Two things Jesus wants us to clearly have when going through trials, tribulations and sorrows: peace in Him and an encouraged heart. It is easy to allow discouragement, disillusionment and darkness to close us off from His peace and His hope. We can choose to quit, or we can choose to press on to reach the end of the prize. (Philippians 3: 14) It is for our best benefit, and for those around us to keep on pressing on. I admit, there have been times in my life when I wondered “why bother”? Life seems too hard, the struggles too real and I don’t think I have it within me to continue on. But God. Then the Holy Spirit came in with His light and His truth. Life isn’t supposed to be easy. Nobody promised us fair. As I drew near to Him, again, I found Him. I knew I did not have to navigate these alone. I knew He was there and I could even find fellowship with Him in the sufferings. Did they miraculously go away? No. But as I adjusted my perspective to understand that these are part of my life here on earth, it became easier to seek Him for His solutions.
Life with Covid’s restrictions is difficult, nor fair. My children and grandchildren face decisions I did not have to ever make. I remember my parents taking us to our doctor’s office after hours, where we found it full of our classmates waiting to receive a polio vaccine. But I know my children and grandchildren will make it. Their stories are being written for future generations. It is our job to pray for them. Encourage them. And help fill their spiritual and emotional toolbox with tools that will help them gain resilience. We can sympathize with them, but let’s not make them victims. Show them what it means to be overcomers. Help them learn gratitude for what they have, instead of continual whining for what they don’t have. It starts with us modeling it.
We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. 2 Corinthians 4: 8-9. Paul endured, and so can we, by the power of the Holy Spirit. Whatever is trying to knock you down or take you out of your assignment, don’t let it. Keep on pressing. Keep on standing. Keep on trusting. The godly may trip seven times, but they will get up again. But one disaster is enough to overthrow the wicked. Proverbs 24: 16.
Father, I thank you for resilience. I thank you that you are helping us grow in this necessary character trait. Help us not to be thrown off course by the trials and tribulations of this world. Our hearts are full of sorrow at times, but You understand those sorrows. I thank you that as we remember you are near to the brokenhearted and you save the crushed in spirit, we will not quit. We are grateful that Your word promises us that all things will work together for our good as we keep on walking and trusting You. In Jesus Name, amen.