Look back, for a moment, on the times that shaped you the most. Was it the days you were stagnant and still? The mornings you woke and followed the same patterns, same routines? The nights you fell asleep with no real ambitions, just ready to move into a new day? To do the same thing, be the same person you were yesterday?
Or was it the times that your foundation was completely rocked? The days riddled with chaos and questions? The mornings you weren’t quite sure where to go next, what path to follow, or even who you were? The nights you lost your sense of purpose and identity, and so began wildly searching for a new place, a new home, a new road?
Was it the painful moments, the struggles, the challenges that truly brought you to the place you are now?
As humans, we’re conditioned to push back against anything that doesn’t feel right or come naturally. Anything that shifts the ground we’re walking upon becomes something we unconsciously resist. We don’t like change, don’t like the feeling of not knowing. We don’t appreciate when the journey we’re facing takes an unexpected twist, when everything we thought we understood suddenly becomes a giant question.
So we push back. We push back against things that scare us, shape us, and try to make our lives move a different way. We don’t like losing a job, a relationship, a home. We don’t like conflict, or being in the midst of it, trying to navigate our next move. This is all natural—the resistance, the fight.
And yet, when we take a step back, it is the moments like this—where nothing makes sense, where we feel lost, where we don’t know who we are or what to do—that we grow the most.
There is a promise of hope on the other side of every challenge we face. On the other side of heartbreak is realizing the love we deserve, and eventually falling into the person who is right for us, the one we were meant to be with all along. On the other side of a failed job interview is a position that’s better suited for our skill set and goals. On the other side of a fight is the realization that the people we love are worth going to battle for, and sometimes we only understand one another in the midst of conflict, in learning to give and take, while not compromising who we are just to make someone else happy.
On the other side of abuse is healing—not in justification of what happened, but in the way we rebuild, we find ourselves, we realize our inherent worth and strength.
On the other side of an incredible loss is remembering that nothing in this life is permanent, and so sometimes the greatest gift of all is to treasure the time, the moments we had with people and things, and live out the remainder of our numbered days honoring exactly that.
There is something to be gained in every loss, something to be loved in every pain, something to be learned in every detour. There is something to be redeemed in every bit of brokenness. There is growth, and healing, and new beginnings when we trust, hold on, and keep moving forward, despite it all.
Though this life can be beautiful when steady and calm, we inevitably will fall into conflict. And those moments of conflict—though scary, though awful, though challenging—are the moments we rise.
You would not be the person you are today, had you not experienced some loss, some brokenness, some heartbreak, some hardship. And though we push back against those moments, and rightfully so, it is because of them that we are strong, that we are proud, that we stand a little taller, ready and willing to let this life shape us.
There is a promise of hope in every challenge. Fight on, have faith, and see it through.
Featured Image Credit: Ethan Hoover