Transforming Our Circumstances

Transforming Our Circumstances


   Things happen to each of us every day that we cannot control. Events change, situations present themselves to us that we did not anticipate. Challenge and hardship as well as opportunity can all knock on our door, often at the same time. We cannot always control our circumstances, but we can always control how we respond to our circumstances!

   We are living in a world that is transforming around us. The worldwide economic recession has affected all of us. The people’s revolution in Africa and the Middle East is forever changing the lives of millions of people. Layoffs, downsizing, war and political gridlock have affected families from Afghanistan to Atlanta. But what are we to do? Our circumstances seem to drown us and often freeze us into desperation or catatonic inaction.

   First acknowledge that circumstances do change and we must always be nimble and alert enough to anticipate them and not panic when our life seemingly changes in an instant. Be calm, be prayerful and always keep your sense of humor. Remember the life skills you have acquired and always keep lists and contact information for your network of family, friends and former colleagues – they are always your most precious possession.

   If your circumstances in life have not changed; get ready, they will! Prepare for changing circumstances by saving some funds for an emergency, get physically fit to ward off sickness or enable recovery from accidents or disease. Always keep food, tools and fuel in storage. Learn alternate career skills and become the most versatile worker in your organization. The versatile utility employee that can do a little of everything is always the last to be laid off.

   Become a member of groups, organizations and a place of worship. Our clubs, coffee groups and churches are our life safety nets and our peers will never truly let us fail or fall. To the extent possible, always purchase insurance for health, life, property, disability and unemployment.

   A set-back is only a set-up for a come-back. Sometimes it is only the chill of changing circumstances that will force us to end abusive relationships or dead-end jobs. What others see as the ‘end of the world’ is only the beginning of a new life. Necessity is the mother of invention. Sometimes unemployment or a failed business unleashes our tenacity and creativity like nothing else on earth. The loss of a job, a relationship, a sale or an election may be the very event that spurs our ingenuity and entrepreneurship and takes us to a better place and life.

   What are your circumstances? Are you stuck or ground down? Try something new and do it with repetition. You almost never transform your circumstances on the first try. Work your networks, volunteer or take a job for no pay and shame the owner into employing you.

   Remember that you must bring added value and return on investment to every job, task and relationship. When you bring value to situations, you will always be in demand. Don’t expect a free ride or a hand out; but always ask for help and confess to others of your changing circumstances. Many times we don’t receive assistance because others don’t know what bad straits we are in.

   Always see changing circumstances as new life adventure and endless opportunity to go places that we would never have voluntarily gone. Strangers are often just friends we have not yet met and a new town is just a home begging you to enter. Don't let pain, shame or failure keep you from seeing the potential, grace and forgiveness that abounds in your future.  

   Most of all, be strong in your faith. Be prayerful daily and let peace surround you in all circumstances. God is the god of all circumstances. God uses our changing circumstances to take us to new and better places; even when the transition is painful and confusing.

   Even our pain and mortality can be spiritually and eternally transformative if we ‘let go and let God’. Others may see our peace in the midst of a storm and be drawn to that same God that gives it to us. When we remain faithful, all things will work for good and the glory of heaven if we believe.

   Don't let circumstances be your master; master your circumstances!