How Well Do You Handle Adversity?

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It always seems, at least to me, that the manner and way a real man handles the various trials and tribulations that attack his life is a very good indicator of the type and kind of man he really is. A secure man,…a man who has a good, positive, and healthy self image,…a man who knows who he really is and keeps that image in proper perspective in relation to the people and events surrounding him…is always the man who handles adversity well.

Good emotional control comes mightily into play as regards the reaction a real man has to the tough and trying times he encounters. Whenever you are able to control your personal emotions, i.e….not get too excited,…not be too laid back,…not over or under react to any given situation,…then you will always be able to stay calm, cool, and collected so as to enable you to properly and wisely respond to anything or anyone coming against you. Can you and Do you keep your cool whenever tensions rise and stressful situations begin to occur in your life?

One day while I was sitting on a beautiful Hawaiian beach in Maui,
I happened to come into contact with none other than Dr. Robert H. Schuller, Senior Pastor of the Chrystal Cathedral in Garden Grove, California. During a short conversation with him, I was given a chance to ask him a direct question and I wasn’t going to pass up such an opportunity. I simply asked,…“Dr. Schuller, out of all the truly great and successful men and women you have ever worked with, been around, and personally knew,…are you aware of any single personal character trait that all of them possessed?” Since he had worked with so many great men and women throughout the world, I figured that he would be well able to answer my pointed question. Without a moment’s hesitation or without batting an eye, he immediately responded….“but, of course,….they all possess and demonstrate emotional stability. ” Dr. Schuller went on to say that in his learned opinion, the single greatest characteristic of all truly successful men and women is that of patience.

Well, now, I do not know about you, but speaking only for myself, that sort of shocked me as it applies directly to my personal life. You see at that point in my life which happened to be about 32 years ago, I would have to honestly admit that neither patience nor emotional stability could under no stretch of the imagination be considered to be one of my long suits or strengths. I knew myself quite well, and at that time would have to admit that I personally was extremely short-tempered, emotionally unstable, and lots of very little things quickly set me off. I was always in a hurry even if I was going absolutely nowhere! Shucks, I could barely even spell the word patience, let alone demonstrate any of it. Dr. Schuller’s words of wisdom gave me cause to stop my fast moving world, and start giving lots of time and thought as to how I must immediately begin to initiate some seriously needed changes to my thought patterns and mental attitudes. Is there any cause,…no matter how slight it may be,…for you to begin making the same or similar adjustments in your own life?

No forward-moving, upward-mobile, soul, throughout all of human history, about whom have I read, heard, or seen has ever been able to transition through their life on this earth and on into eternity without facing strong opposition, heartache, struggle, strife, and adversity, i.e. without getting knocked down…several times! Now listen, I just told you that if you are in a growth mode,…if you are attempting to do great things as compared to the masses on the earth who are not in such a mode,…if you are in the process of achieving great success,…then get ready for battle,…get ready for disasters,….get ready for disappointments,…get ready to be let down by other people including close friends and even family members. It is all part of the price that must be paid in order to become successful. Sure it hurts,…sure it is painful,…sure it breaks your heart when people you really love and care about don’t necessarily feel the same way about you. But you have got to grow up! You have got to do some changing! You have got to love those whose trespass against you, and forgive those who have wronged you, then pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and start all over again…no matter how many times adversity strikes you!

It is for these specific reasons and several others that only 2% of the population reaches economic success, financial independence, and personal freedom. Of course, everyone can succeed, however there is only that precious 2% who are willing to pay full price over a prolonged period of time and actually get the job done. In which group are you? I would challenge you to honestly evaluate yourself and your achievements that you personally have accomplished or failed to accomplish. Are you part of the problem in America, the 98% who want everything provided for them or do you consider yourself in the upper 2% group who are the real “movers” and “shakers” in our society. How you act and react whenever trying times of adversity hit you in the face will be the determining factor as to whether you are a candidate for the 2% club. The great Poet, Edgar A. Guest, put it all into proper perspective when he penned these famous and empowering words in his poem:

Don’t Quit

“When Things go wrong, as they sometimes will,
When the road you’re trudging seems all uphill,
When the funds are low and debts are high,
And you want to smile but have to sigh.
When care is pressing you down a bit,
Rest, if you must, but don’t you quit.

Life is queer with its twists and turns,
As everyone of us sometimes learns,
And many a failure turns about,
When he might have won if he’d stuck it out,
Don’t give up though the pace seems slow,
You might succeed with another blow.

Often the struggler has given up,
When he might have captured the victor’s cup.
And he learned too late, when the night slipped down,
How close he was to the golden crown,

Success is failure turned inside out,
The silver tint of clouds of doubt,
And you never can tell how close you are,
It may be near when it seems afar,
So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit,
It’s when things seem worst that you mustn’t quit.”

Dear Ones, please listen to me. God wants you to become successful, He wants you to have all of the dreams and desires of your own heart. His Word promises that no matter what we think, say, or do, “all” things work together for our own good if we will simply keep trying and not give up.

Now I understand, believe me, that not everything that happens to you is or will be good and beneficial, but regardless of what you think or how you react, God’s Words tells us emphatically that everything is going to work out just fine. That it will all work together for good. It all will work to our own benefit. This will happen as long as we ourselves stay steady at the task of growing, loving, and serving our Holy God and our fellow man. Your choosing to have and maintain a positive mental attitude and a good hard charging work ethic will be the main-stays of insuring everything comes out all right. All of those type things are a personal choice. Nothing (failure) is ever forced upon you. You are where you are today based totally upon all of the decisions you have made and the actions you have taken over the last 10 or more years of living your own life!

Continuing to love your God and your fellow man and serve them both is a very doable thing that anyone can accomplish. If you are pursuing excellence, attempting to succeed at a great opportunity, or just simply living your life as best you know how to live it,…you are going to run into opposition and most probably get knocked down. Whenever you rise up from any adversity or negative encounter you face,…whenever you rise up from every event or encounter that knocks you down,…it is then that you realize and begin to act “as if” you totally believe that everything that you are doing or that is happening to you is going to be very fine and will all work out for your own personal blessing and benefit. You either believe that or you don’t. There is no middle ground concerning this issue.

If you believe it GREAT! If you don’t, I can only feel sorry for you.

Remember Our Creator God’s most powerful words as recorded in The Book of Mark, Chapter 9, verse 23, NKJV:

(23) “Jesus said to him, ‘If you can believe, all things are
possible to him who believes.’ ”

So whenever adversity strikes against you, keep on believing, keep on working towards your own dreams and goals. Don’t doubt, don’t fear, and don’t listen to the critics and “naysayers.” Just believe and keep moving forward. Keep working at completing the things that need to be done and you will be just fine. Your correct and fine example is showing and telling all of your followers how to act whenever they are attacked. Allow your actions to do all of your own talking for you.

There is an old saying that you would do well to remember. It goes like this: “Every adversity carries within it the seeds of an equal or greater benefit…IF…you are willing to look for it while maintaining a good positive mental attitude.”

Leaders Gotta Lead………

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