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Nov 16, 2017

It’s not news that we live a world of uncertainty, fear, and anxiety, but how can we improve our spiritual and mental lives in such uncertain and dangerous times and confidently carry ourselves forward? What guidance and wisdom can scripture and the teaching of Jesus provide us to prepare, handle and process the seemingly endless stream of bad news from media, culture and social media? In this episode, Rev. Beverly Gibson discusses the parable the lamp oil and the ten bridesmaids and how this lesson is directly related to dealing with impatience, fear, anxiety, and dealing with the unknown in today’s world. God wants us to be joyful, at peace and yes, resilient. Not just the ability to bounce back from hardship or a temporary set-back resilient but a courage filled and bold confidence to overcome fears and trauma. Many of us are seeking an on-going way of approaching life that we know will be filled with a seemingly endless series of challenges and problems. Maybe by wisely opening up to living a life of faith, grace, balance, vigilant resilience, and doing the work that God has called us to do we could prepare ourselves to adapt well in the face of adversity, threats, fear, and tragedy.

Recently, the nature of resilience and dealing with uncertain times was discussed in a Wall Street Journal article by writer Meg Jay, The Secrets of Resilience. While this more of a guide to implementing resilience in our individual life, it can be seen equally relevant and beneficial for our Church family and spiritual life.

Meg Jay's steps on learning to become resilient and conquering adversity:

  1. Take on long-term and long-form projects that can feel like challenges but not threats.
  2. Resist defeat by setting your mind on positive things.
  3. Reach out to others who care and work together.
  4. Make a realistic plan to improve your situation.
  5. Work plan day by day.
  6. Remember the ways you have been courageous and strong in the past.

Life is a gift from God, and it should be lived as fully as we can live. We should do all things, including the path to resilience, in the light of Christ’s resurrection and his presence among us, even as we await his coming again. As Christians, our foundation is our baptism, it's nurtured and grown in a life of discipleship, and our lamp oil is the energy generated in doing the work we are called to do. We do these all things because they are what Christ he has told us to do in his teachings. In the doing so, we become stronger in our faith and more capable of proclaiming the good news that has been given to us.

Readings This Week

Joshua 24:1-3a, 14-25
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
Matthew 25:1-13