Overcoming Adversity

mountain hikeby Leu Killion

Recently I was reading a children’s book to my young granddaughter. The story begins with the main character puzzling over a phrase her mother used: You are making a mountain out of a molehill, or was it a molehill out of a mountain?

In life we will encounter adversity in many forms; from the minor such as a car that won’t start, to the profound such as serious illness, a broken relationship, the death of a loved one. Sometimes we can make a mountain out of a molehill, and sometimes we have real ‘mountains’ that seem insurmountable. It is dealing with the difficulties of life that shapes us into the people we become. We can master challenges with the support of others, our emotional strength, our courage and our faith.

This is expressed in Romans 5:3-5: “Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; and perseverance produces character; and character produces hope. And hope does not disappoint us.”

During Lent, we recall the suffering Jesus endured for us. But that suffering is not the end of the story. Ultimately Christ’s suffering and death brings Him to His resurrection. Christ is a beautiful example to us that faith and the hope of resurrection can bring us through our trials in life. Big or small … hope conquers them all.

As I finished the book, my granddaughter’s head nestled against my shoulder, I relished the moment. As much as I’d like to, I know I can’t shelter her from the bumps and bruises that will inevitably come her way. But I know we learn from the challenges we face, and grow in our compassion, understanding and resilience.

Adversity can have a purpose in life. Suffering can bring you closer to God. If we walk with God, each challenge and difficulty can help us grow emotionally; grow closer to family and friends, and grow as a person with renewed priorities of faith, love and hope.  And hope does not disappoint.

Leu Killion is the Parish Nurse at Prince of Peace.

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