Tuesday, May 3, 2016
Where Does Resilience Come From?
"Resilience is that ineffable quality that allows some people to be knocked down by life and come back stronger than ever. Rather than letting failure overcome them and drain their resolve, they find a way to rise from the ashes. Psychologists have identified some of the factors that make someone resilient, among them a positive attitude, optimism, the ability to regulate emotions, and the ability to see failure as a form of helpful feedback. Even after misfortune, resilient people are blessed with such an outlook that they are able to change course and soldier on."
Psychology Today https://www.psychologytoday.com/basics/resilience
On the way home from purchasing our new flooring for our kitchen and dining room (see picture above)- (see pictures below for the back story to that), my hubby and I were talking about how blessed we were...not only in how the Lord has provided the way for us to take care of our floor problem...and how our wonderful sons and friends have pitched in to help us fix the situation, but just in general...how truly blessed we are.
I made the comment that even though we have been through some very difficult times in our lives...some you may know about, and many more you probably don't need to know about...God has helped us to be resilient throughout times of adversity...to bounce back from sorrows and tragedies, and in most cases to truly come back stronger than before...because of His amazing grace and mercy.
As the word "resilient" came to my mind and lips, I started to chuckle...and I said to my hubby..."just like our new floor...'Resilient...Waterproof...Sturdy...Quiet...' and the chuckle was about the "waterproof and quiet" portion of the description. Although it could be said that we have "weathered" many storms in life...but we've never been described as "quiet" by any stretch of the imagination as far as I could tell!
So, where does this resilience come from? Is it something that we have acquired naturally, in our own strength? Not hardly.
Psychology Today has given an apt description of the word resilience...but God's Word explains just how we, who are called by His Name, are able to obtain this resilience and rise above the circumstances of this life and live victoriously.
In thinking about this, I looked into the scriptures to find some kind of reference to the word resilient. Although I could not locate any specific verses using this particular word, there are many references that describe and explain how the believer in Christ is able to rebound from adversities. I won't be able to list them all for you here, but will give a few examples for you to explore on your own.
"But we have this treasure in earthen vessels,
that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us,
We are hard pressed on every side,
yet not crushed;
we are perplexed, but not in despair;
Persecuted, but not forsaken;
Struck down, but not destroyed--"
2 Corinthians 4:7-9
Isaiah 61:3 is an excellent example of how this resilience comes to us as a gift from the Lord...
"To console those who mourn in Zion,
To give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning,
The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness;
That they may be called trees of righteousness,
The planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified."
Psalm 30:5 is another example of how God is teaching us resilience:
"For His anger is but for a moment,
His favor is for life;
Weeping may endure for a night,
But JOY comes in the morning."
Many of us can quote Romans 8:28 as a verse that helps us to understand that everything that comes into our lives can be used for our good:
"And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose."
And the security we have as believers in Christ is this:
"Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?
Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution,
or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
As it is written:
For Your sake we are killed all day long;
We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.
Yet in all these things we are
more than conquerors through Him Who loved us.
For I am persuaded that neither death nor life,
nor angels nor principalities nor powers,
nor things present nor things to come,
nor height nor depth,
nor any other created thing,
shall be able to separate us from the love of God
which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."
Another favorite scripture passage helps us to understand where this resilience comes from: Proverbs 3:5-6
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
and lean not on your own understanding;
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
and He shall direct your paths."
Also Proverbs 3:11-12 comforts us when we do endure chastening:
"My son, do not despise the
chastening of the Lord,
Nor detest His correction;
For whom the Lord loves He corrects,
Just as a father the son in whom he delights."
We'll stop here for now. The flooring will be installed soon. This is a very small problem compared to what so many have endured throughout our country. I am so thankful for the resilience of my family through hard times and sad times that have been far greater than this. But most of all, I am thankful for how the Lord gives us the strength we need to get through these difficult times.
Where does your resilience come from? Something to think about.