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Written by Jenny Huthnance
When I was growing up my mother used to say on a regular basis “It’s not what happens to you, it’s how you react to it that counts.” I didn’t understand the depth of that saying until I was older. I now understood that she was trying to teach me -- resilience.
Resilience seems to be one of the most recent and trending topics highlighted for parenting children these days. It has been considered to be the most important virtue when promoting success in a child. Developing resilience however takes time and can be quite a dynamic process in moulding the way a child approaches and overcomes obstacles in life.
There is proof in the scriptures that God is trying to teach us, His children, to be resilient Christians.
In Revelation 2 and 3 Jesus Christ lists the weaknesses of each church mentioned and that those faults must be overcome in order to make it into His Kingdom. Resilience is one of the dynamics in this process.
There is a habit that most humans fall into when obstacles and trials are encountered and that is to ask “why me?” or “why is this happening?” or even worse “why am I being punished?” or “why is God allowing this?” However, resilience assists us in going one step beyond that so that we can maturely ask “What am I to learn from this?” But an even better step beyond that is acceptance and to ask “How can I serve in this situation?”
After being wrongly accused, Joseph had every reason in prison to ask why this was happening to him, but there is nothing in the scriptures that said he did. What we do know is that he showed great resilience in such difficult circumstances and he chose not to focus on himself but willingly served others in the prison (Genesis 39 onwards).
We live in a world where we are taught to serve ourselves and, if something doesn’t make us happy, to change the situation we switch jobs, or partners, or churches. Sometimes there are situations in which change is needed, but there are times like Paul says in Philippians 4:11-13 that we need to be content in whatever state we find ourselves. This may require the exercise of considerable resilience in order to achieve this contentment.
It takes a resilient Christian to recognize God’s will in what can be some of the worst situations that overtake us in life and to find a way to serve others.
God knew how it would all work out in the end. He knew the conclusion of His works, before He even began! God, because of who He is, has the intent, the will and the power to carry out everything and anything He purposes! So, what is His plan...?
God has in mind a wonderful future for all of mankind. As God’s grace was shown at the beginning of creation so, too, will we see God’s grace at the end of the age. God’s plan will stand and come to pass as He said. Whatever dilemma we are in, God will see us through. We know that there is a purpose for everything that happens, and God knows all things.
With this in mind, do we have any responsibility toward God and our fellow man?
Scripture tells us that we, too, need to undergo a transformation - a change, with God's help, from "the old man" to "the new man," a human being "renewed in knowledge" and "created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness" (Colossians 3:9-10; Ephesians 4:22-24). In this lesson we discuss this remarkable change, made possible by the transforming power of God's Spirit.
Are you desiring a closer relationship with God? If so, where do you start? What tools can you use to grow spiritually and build that all-important relationship with your Creator? This important study aid will set you on the right path. Read and begin implementing these important elements today!
In this booklet we will examine the Bible's teaching on conversion—it is not just a one-time event. Instead the Scriptures reveal that it is a process. The process begins with God's calling, followed by the key steps of repentance, baptism and the receiving of the Holy Spirit, finally climaxing with the return of Jesus Christ — when the dead in Christ are resurrected to immortality and given eternal life — the ultimate transformation!
The United States is deeply divided—to the point that many Americans expect violence and perhaps even another civil war. What are the roots of these irreconcilable differences? Where will they take the nation? Perhaps not surprisingly, the answers are found in the pages of your Bible. And what it means for the entire world—and your life and the lives of your loved ones—is sobering. What can and should you do? Be sure to read this issue of Beyond Today.