They say that pressure makes diamonds. And heat purifies gold. So too, difficulties and trials in this life, hopefully, produces a better person.
Right now, I’m in a high pressure period. Financial pressures; work pressure; family pressure – with children’s issues weighing the heaviest. And let’s not even talk about the psychological pressure of living under severe drought.
At times like these, it helps to step out of my life: imagine a future time – far from this – where I can look back at this period and either shudder at the intensity of the challenges, or smile knowing that it wasn’t as bad as I made it out to be, and it’s now over – having brought much more benefit than times of ease.
I know my challenges are probably minuscule compared to what others face. But nevertheless, they remain challenges. MY challenges.
Every person has their own unique, tailor-made challenges in life. And we often do a good job of hiding them. What we see in a person’s public persona – be that in our personal interactions with them, or social media activities, or in any other sphere – is only a portion of their lives. A portion that they choose to reflect to the outside world.
We all wear masks. We have to. We cannot expose our vulnerabilities to others all the time.
Part of being a grown up is learning to deal with your challenges and get on with life. God has created this worldly existence in balance – with good times and bad; joy and pain; agony and ecstasy. We need to experience the tough times in order to appreciate the ease.
It’ll all pass, though. One day, it’ll all be over.
And what will remain with us is our record of deeds: how we handled each and every situation – taking into account all the contextual factors, such as our inner strength (or weakness), our emotional baggage, the role others played in these episodes, and how close or distant we were to the Almighty as we stepped through the days, weeks, months, and years of our lives.
May we all have the strength, wisdom, and perseverance to come through our trials successfully.