The Easy Times Don’t Change Us Much; It’s The Hard Things That Teach Us Lessons

I am currently reading a book titled, “The Manual: Getting Masculinity Right” by Al Stewart, and today on page 78 the author writes about how life is hard but with a viewpoint that we need a little bit of hard life to be conformed into a better person.

Hard Times

On this page Stewart shares a story about Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts, speaking at his son’s middle-school graduation, June 3, 2017. Here is what he said:

From time to time, in the years to come, I hope you will be treated unfairly; so that you will come to know the value of justice. I hope that you will suffer betrayal; because that will teach you the importance of loyalty.

Sorry to say, but I hope you will be lonely, from time to time; so that you don’t take friends for granted. I wish you bad luck, again, from time to time; so that you will be conscious of the role of chance in life, and understand that your success is not completely deserved, and that the failure of others is not completely deserved, either.

And when you lose, as you will from time to time, I hope, every now and then, your opponent will gloat over your failure; it is a way for you to understand the importance of sportsmanship. I hope you’ll be ignored; so that you know the importance of listening to others. I hope you will have just enough pain, to learn compassion.

Whether I wish these things or not, they’re going to happen. And whether you benefit from them, or not, will depend upon your ability to see the message in your misfortunes.

I found this speech to be wise and inspiring. However, it is only part of the story. We must also recognize life in this way through the reality of the providence of God and his perfect plan. The Bible tells us this:

Romans 8:28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

Recognize it doesn’t say “all good things” it says “all things”, the good and the bad work together for good.

Not such an easy thing to remember in the midst of bad times but in reflection of my own life I can definitely see the truth in it, and you probably can too, If you look at it through the lens of scripture.

Harold Thornbro

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