Has Life Broken You?

While I was a college student I took classes in Psychology as well as counselling.  In one of those classes, we had to do a test to analyze our emotional and mental temperament. There was a questionnaire with lots of topics and a list of life experiences for which each experience was given a number according to its intensity. The purpose was to grade the effect of difficult life experiences on an individual. When I filled up that page at the age of 20, the totals were quite large. According to those numbers I should have been an emotional wreck many times over.
Through the years I remembered that test many times.  Especially when I experienced excruciating pain as a result of the pressures in life.  For a long time that pain was emotional, then for about seventeen years it became increasingly physical.
The emotional pain was mostly ignored due to a strong will that allowed me to move on.  I was aware of that pain, but I never allowed it to inhibit me in any way.  When the pain became physical, I was still able to ignore it until I was bedridden.  Now that changed everything.  Every movement of my body caused me excruciating pain.

It was in my late teens that I heard the saying: “Life is not out to break you but to make you.”  This statement has helped me tremendously over the ears as I faced numerous struggles in life.  I would remember the words of Jesus: “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace.  In the world you will have tribulation.  But take heart; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33 ESV)

When the pain became physical and I was bed-ridden for months at a time, I began to question my own perspectives.  “Maybe life is out to break me, not to make me.”  I helped so many others to find hope, but I ended up in a hopeless situation.

Through numerous tragedies in her life, Lee Ezell in her book, Finding Hope When Life’s Not Fair, says: “…it may be way too early to judge whether or not this catastrophe in your life will ultimately be devastating.  Perhaps you will soon see how God is working it into His plan for you!  Both the good and the bad may be woven together into the beautiful tapestry of our life.”

So what if you think life is out to break you, not make you?  Remember that Jesus has overcome the world and he offers us his peace.  If you can wait long enough, he works it out in our lives so that it becomes something beautiful in his eyes, either here on earth or beyond.

How have you handled your situations where you felt that life is out to break you, not make you?  Do you have suggestions for others in the same situation?

Leave your comments below.

Photo credit michael pollak Creative Commons.


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