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The only people that don’t encounter difficulties…are dead.

The past 16 months of my life have been very interesting to say the least. Every person close to me in my family has had a major situation to deal with. When I call something major, I mean it has a drastic and lasting effect on the life you are living, and requires resolution…in other words, it isn’t something you can’t just hope will get better.

Of course these issues affected me as well. It is the nature of family that challenges are shared to some degree and depending on the relationship the degree can be very high. So not only was I involved practically where possible, but being a very sensitive person I was highly involved emotionally. In my less mature days, I would have lamented and asked “why do these things have to happen?” in the victim-like voice. It really hurts when someone I love is hurting. While I don’t welcome the kinds of issues we faced, I am happy to say that I understand that all these things are part of the process of life.

I have learned that difficulties expose the character you possess at the specific time in your life.

This is the good side of struggles in the now. They show you where you have come as a human being. At the same time they are developing a new level of growth and character in you for the next set of difficulties. I am a believer in the principle that “God doesn’t give you more than you can handle.” The challenge for many people is they have no idea what they can handle because they haven’t stretched far enough in their life…so they only find out when something difficult happens. In other words they only find out in reaction.

Those that invest themselves consistently in spiritual and personal development, and who are consistently breaking through their comfort zone are being proactive. They are doing difficult things in life frequently because they are growing on purpose…and growth is fraught with difficulties. 

The other thing about difficulties is that good comes from it every time. Sometimes the good is evident and sometimes it’s not. Those with a positive view of life can see the good quickly, those with a victim view miss the positive side.

Jim Rohn’s perspective was right on when he said…

“In the final analysis, we are all faced  with about the same circumstances over the period of a lifetime. Some choose to use them as an excuse for poor performance while others use those same circumstances as a reason to grow and to drive themselves to new heights of accomplishment.

We all have opportunity mixed with difficulty. All of us have times of illness in addition to years of health. The storms come upon the rich as well as the poor. Whatever happens, happens to all of us. The only difference is our approach to the “things that happen.” It is not what happens that determines the quality of our lives, it is what we choose to do about what happens.”



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