IF EVER there was a great biblical examplar of resilience, it is the apostle Paul. According to his own testimony he experienced imprisonments, countless floggings, being near death, whippings…, beatings…, being stoned, shipwrecks, being adrift at sea, danger from rivers, danger from bandits, danger from his own people … toil and hardship, many a sleepless night, hunger and thirst, being often without food, cold and naked. …
“Resilience” is the ability to respond creatively to stressful, pressure-packed, anxiety producing situations such as Paul’s. A resilient person, rather than being deformed, diminished, or even destroyed by such traumatic, tension-filled circumstances, is able to engage those conditions in healthy, redemptive ways that bring some degree of wholeness.
In a world increasingly torn by strife and brokenness at every level, what passes for resilience is largely characterized by fight-or-flight responses. … Flight responses include mental, emotional, or physical withdrawal from adversity, pharmacological escapes, or apathetic resignation.
Paul provides a third, and much more viable response to life-disrupting situations: “In nothing be anxious, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will keep your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:6-7, emphasis added).
- Robert Mullholland
Weavings, Feb/March/April 2013
From “Resilience: A Rhythm of Life ‘Hid with Christ in God’ ” by Robert Mullholland, pages 31-32 in Weavings: A Journal of the Christian Spiritual Life, February/March/April 2013. Copyright © 2012 by The Upper Room. All rights reserved. Used by permission. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.
How do you manage anxiety? Share your thoughts.
Now about eight days after these sayings Jesus took with him Peter and John and James, and went up on the mountain to pray. And while he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became dazzling white.
Luke 9:28-29, NRSV
This Week: pray for people new Christians. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section below.
Did You Know?
Happy 75th anniversary, El Aposento Alto!
This year, the Spanish language edition of El Aposento Alto celebrates its 75th anniversary. Congratulate the editors and the community in the comment section on the web: http://elaposentoalto.upperroom.org/es
This week we remember Rabanus Maurus (January 30).
(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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