I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting as of late. It dawned on me how quickly this year has zipped by. I know I say it every year, but this time around it truly does feel like I blinked and now we’re in September. Where has all the time gone? This time last year, I was in a really strange place. I had just started working at a nonprofit as an AmeriCorps VISTA after being laid off from my magazine job. I thought I was struggling living off unemployment and sending in hundreds of job applications. You would think I’d be happy to get a new gig, but in reality I was scared about the yearlong commitment I had made by accepting the role. It required me to literally live in poverty for the duration of that term. It was much more challenging and rewarding than I anticipated. Well, I came to discover the latter way later during that particular season. But when I think back to that trying time in my life, I can’t believe that I survived it. In the midst of the struggle, I found strength. I learned that I’m much stronger than I thought I was. May this Wednesday Word, courtesy of Oprah Winfrey, remind you to be grateful for the tests because those are the moments that show you what you’re made of. In life you’ll have to go through some stuff. But when you go through the fire, you will emerge like a phoenix from ashes. I know I did. If life was always going swimmingly it would take the value away from authentic happiness. So I thank God for being my refuge and strength, an ever-present help in times of trouble (Psalm 46:1). I wouldn’t be the person I am today without those experiences and the resolve I acquired in the process.
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