Is this same inadequate focus also evident in our personal and spiritual lives? Are we more geared to insuring we are living well (more luxuriously) than to equipping ourselves for resilience to the situations we encounter?
Are these decisions based on the expectation that we should be immune to the stormy seas that come with everyday living? Are we like ships that are fearful of embarking on a journey because we might encounter bad weather?
Disappointment, pain, death, despair, failure – all are part of the package when it comes to living in the everyday world. There’s an old poem that says “God did not promise days without pain, laughter without sorrow, or sun without rain”. It concludes, “God did promise strength for the day, comfort for the tears, and light for the way”.
Plant breeders could search how to make their seeds more resilient to the weather, and their cropping techniques less vulnerable to the extremes. We humans could do the same. Not only can we develop resilience readiness, but as we work our way through various situations our changing expectation could help us become more resilient than ever.
Having realistic expectations, learning coping skills, strengthening ourselves as we pass through the dark channels, seeking after the glimmers of hope that lie before us – it is up to us to make our preparations. What values have priority – riches of affluence or riches of the spirit? The ability to satisfy our physical needs or the ability to nurture our soul?
What is the legacy we would like to pass to those whose lives touch ours?