Sometimes you just hear God loud and clear. This idea has been on my heart to share for a few days now, but for some reason I’ve felt insecure about doing so. And then, God spoke to me through something and was just like, “Nope. Mere. This is what you need to do. Do it.” Things may have seem like they’ve stopped completely, but the Spirit is always moving, y’all.
We are living in times of suffering and uncertainty like none of us have experienced before. We are physically distanced and unsure of when this will be over. There is no manager of the Coronavirus who can tell us when our lives will resume. And they will not be as they were a few weeks ago even when they do.
I’ve been experiencing a roller coaster of emotions through all this – fear, worry, anxiety, gratitude, peace, passion, motivation – all of it. Each day I feel different and I never know what to expect. Fear has overpowered me and led me to doubt if I can get through this. It has been really freaking hard and scary and I know you can relate.
I’m about to write something you might disagree with, but I’m going to do it anyway.
You’ve been here before.
No, not in a global pandemic, but you’ve been in a season of suffering and uncertainty before. How do I know this? Because you are a human and one of the only things guaranteed to us all is that we will experience suffering. And suffering almost never comes with a clear end date. Suffering doesn’t say, “Okay, I know this sucks and is really hard right now, but in one week, you can be sure you’ll be over it.” Suffering is never simple.
But here you are, present day, having overcome hardship and grown from sufferings in the past. You’ve changed because of them. We always grow and change as a result of suffering. We become stronger. We become more resilient.
I believe that we all practice and display resilience when we adapt to a “new normal” amidst any kind of suffering. Any time something has been broken, changed, taken away from your life before, you have adapted to it, accepted it, and grown from it. Every season of life has an offering of growth. My goodness I don’t mean this to sound like I think this is a good thing, but I think if we don’t open ourselves to the possibility of positive growth happening from this crisis, we won’t have a chance at adapting and growing as a result of it.
In an article from the American Psychological Association on resilience, they write:
Psychologists define resilience as the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats or significant sources of stress — such as family and relationship problems, serious health problems, or workplace and financial stressors. Becoming more resilient not only helps you get through difficult circumstances, it also empowers you to grow and even improve your life along the way.
I love the last part of that definition – it empowers you to grow and even improve your life along the way. I’m a fairly positive person and I believe that making meaning and finding purpose within suffering allows us to develop and grow. Resilience is not something you either have or don’t have, but is something you can practice developing. It’s like a muscle that you can work on that becomes stronger with every season of life.
The APA article continues to share ways that you can develop your resilience, and I highly recommend checking it out here if you want more specific steps to do so.
My mantra for this week, and maybe for yours too, is to
Remember Your Resilience
Self-doubt and fear of how I will get through this has been creeping in big time the last few days. And it has taken, and will continue to take, some serious adapting to endure the new normal.
What helps me is to reflect back on times when I’ve been here before…in a new normal as a result of suffering.
I remember that when I thought it would last forever, it didn’t.
I remember that when I didn’t think I could cope and make it through, I did.
I remember that when I didn’t think I had what it took to come out of it stronger than before, I still did.
I didn’t do it alone, and there were still more “bad” days than good sometimes, but I have overcome. I have adapted. I have grown. And this time is no different in that regard.
You are resilient. You’ve grown from suffering before and you will grow again. When your mind goes to a place of self-doubt and fear, gently guide yourself to that memory of a time where you overcame suffering. That same person lives in you now.
We are in this together, my friends. Remember your resilience today.