Handling Tragedy, Part 4
This is a good one today and one that took me quite by surprise. I’m talking about handling tragedy.
#4 Seek to bless others.
I know the tendency is to go inward when trials come uninvited. It’s all about me. My pain. My suffering. My discomfort. My heartache. But if we get the first three points right this one won’t be so hard.
When I first found out I had cancer one of my first thoughts and prayers was, “Lord, if I have to go through this please don’t let it be in vain. Let me learn something through this that will change my life and use it to bless others.” That’s when I started this blog. I hope it’s been a blessing to at least a few. That would make it all worthwhile.
Suffering doesn’t have to be all negative. Yes, it hurts and changes your life and takes you way out of your comfort zone and it’s almost impossible to think of anything positive coming out of it, but it can.
Use your trial to be a blessing to others.
Share your experience with them, through a journal, a blog, letters, phone conversations, when they come visiting. Tell them what you’re struggling with but also what you’re learning about God and His ways and His faithfulness. Share with them the blessings you’ve found in the midst of hardship (by the way, they’re there, sometimes you just have to look a little harder–that’s for tomorrow).
Let others bless you. Let people help, let them clean your house and make meals and watch the kids. Look, this is one of the reasons for being plugged in to a local church. When tragedy happens, the Body of Christ springs into action. Don’t be too prideful to accept someone else’s help. After my first surgery when I was laid up for six weeks we had people bringing us meals, cutting our grass, mulching our gardens, putting the air conditioning units in the windows, cleaning our house, washing our cars, picking up groceries, sending us money. We were blessed and they were blessed. Turning away someone’s help is robbing them of a blessing.
Focusing on how God can use your trial to bless others will bless you and turn a trial, at least in one way, into a positive thing.
Tomorrow, find the blessings in tragedy (hint: they’re often hiding).
On another note, Jen’s been sick all week so since I’ve been home I’ve been playing Mr. Mom. Homeschooling the kids, doing the laundry, washing the dishes, grocery shopping, making meals (easy ones, mind you . . . I need dummy-proof meals). Now, here’ s my conclusion to the matter. I’ve enjoyed doing all this; I even joked with Jen about her getting a full-time job and I could stay home and play house-husband. But . . . BUT (notice the all caps) . . . I wouldn’t want to do it all the time. It’s hard work! Either the kids wouldn’t make it to see their teen years or I wouldn’t make it to see their teen years.
Wives and mommies reading this, thank you for what you do. I’ve gained a whole new appreciation for Jen and every wife/mom out there who keeps a house together and everyone’s sanity in check. You have the most important job of all.