The question had been asked of me often over the last few months. “Why?”
It is a one word question that asks the greater question, “Why does God allow pain?” Or disappointment? Or suffering or … any other unbearable heartache or trauma.
I am not sure we can ever fully comprehend when difficult circumstances enter our lives, nor find the all the answers we seek, but we can find a way to respond in a healthy manner so that difficulties do not consume us.
Becoming Resilient by author, Donna Gibbs, seeks to help us find our way to a healthy response so that we are able to move through our suffering and become even stronger because we have endured.
The author offers practical and wise help to propel us forward to live with greater purpose rather than being stuck in the past. We will never be able to avoid suffering. We need to learn how to respond in a godly way so that we endure and become productive in spite of our pain and not immobilized by it.
Each chapter felt like a counseling session as her manner is compassionate, gentle, and easy. There are homework questions at the end of each chapter designed to move us forward, bringing progress to our journey, and to victory. There are also victory verses, suggested to memorize, at the close of each chapter.
Our pain need not be the end of our story. We can continue on without regret, destruction, and unhealthy patterns to a future that is lived well.
Resilience – the power or ability to return to the original form. To bounce back as the author explains:
“When you throw a bouncy ball onto the floor, it bounces back higher than its starting point. When the ball first hits the floor, it is compressed and changes slightly in shape. Then it springs forward with power and restores it shape. The harder you throw it down, the higher it bounces in reaction. The resilience of the ball defies gravity.
Can it be so with our hurts in life as well? Is it possible for our tragedies to propel us to bounce back? Could we ultimately spring back in better shape than we were before we were slammed to the ground? Absolutely!
(taken from page 191)
We can return from our hurts without being robbed of all God has for us. God can bring healing and create something beautiful out of each hurt to our benefit.
We need people who rise up from difficulty and pain, those who display courage in the face of overwhelming odds. One might even call those people heroes. God knows we are in need of more heroes around us these days. Perhaps He is even molding each one of us into heroes for the world to see so that they see Him, the One who has overcome all things.
“Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow, for when endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete needing nothing.” (James 1:2-4, NLT)
The book was an encouraging read not only for those days that I may need to endure but as a resource to encourage others in my life.
*** I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell/ a division of Baker Publishing Group in exchange for my honest review.