The Resilience of Christ
Throughout my years in counseling, I've been described as an individual with tremendous resilience. As I wrote my life story, I needed to be reminded of my resilience. Satan came to me while writing the final chapters of my book and engaged me in self-pity.
He whispered in my ear, "Look at your sad, sad life. Look at it, laid out in a timeline for your book. It's not a bright picture of a blessed life lived for Christ, is it? Patti, you've lived a life filled with nothing but disappointment. Why would you tell people you're blessed? Your life is a sad one."
When he transmitted those thoughts across my mind, I stopped typing and asked God to please intercept Satan's opinion about my life. He instantly spoke truth into my heart, seized every twisted notion, and shut down Satan's intended distraction.
Patti, I made you resilient for your life story. I placed a resilient spirit in you while you were being formed in your mother's womb. I designed you with the ability to recover from difficult experiences and setbacks, to adapt, move forward, and even experience growth. I trusted you with this strength. I trusted that you would one day testify that this all-surpassing power to endure hardship is from Me and not you.
I'm grateful for the ability to cut through dark thoughts with the light of God's truth. Satan wanted me to view my life as a disability, with limits to my challenges. Resilience is the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties. Being resilient means facing trouble head-on instead of falling into despair. God has given me a mental reservoir of strength that helps me handle hardship. I have the ability to bounce back from the stresses of life. My testimony is not about avoiding the stress, but rather, learning to thrive within the stress; to face it head-on and not let it get the best of me.
Resilience isn't about toughing it out or reacting to every setback with a smile. I still feel sad, angry, or frustrated when faced with a setback. But with God's help, I find ways to move forward and tackle challenges with hope and a positive attitude.
Scriptures have guided me through the obstacle course of fear and anger. I climbed over fear and didn't allow it to hold me back from new experiences or opportunities for growth. I've felt scared and overwhelmed many times, but I started with the simplest thing I could do first. I stepped up into God's presence and found clarity. I was able to cross over the pit of anger on suspended ropes that were tethered to God's peace. Feelings of anger are normal, but I was facing the risk of falling into deep negative feelings.
I have a beautiful treasure hidden in my core ... the presence and peace of God. I need this peace to expand my faith, my hope, and my strength in times when the outward circumstances of life become almost unbearable. Wallowing in my sorrows is just about the worst thing I can do in a bad situation. Self-pity makes me unable to do battle for myself.
The presence of God in my life taught me how to grieve y losses, make a plan, and move on. Satan is the one who wants to destroy my peace and kill my testimony. Because he knows my testimony will influence the world. People are watching my life.