Giving youth pastors the tools they need to make and shape disciples.

The Secret Plan Adversity Has For Your Life

8 · 27 · 18

Some people run from adversity and others run into it.  – Gary Vaynerchuk 

Adversity: from Old French adversite, from Latin adversitas, from advertere ‘turn toward.’

Most fo the time, I look at adversity at adversity as that thing that won’t let me have what I want. It stands in my way. It opposes me. But adversity has a plan.

Before I share what that plan is, we must remember that adversity is not respecter of persons. If you are alive, adversity has targeted you.

Being young (under 18) has it’s adversity. You can’t go where you want. You have to answer to authorities. You have a curfew. When we’re young we think this is real adversity. Reality collides with out natural “need to be free” instinct. 

Getting older has it’s adversity. Whether it’s the 9-5 job, the terrible boss the real relationship, the marriage, the finances, health issues, etc. Adversity has no limit. 

Senator John McCain just passed away. The Senator from Arizona fought in the Vietnam War and was shot down, captured and tortured for six years. Still think what you have is adversity? Most of us will never know this kind of adversity and, before we complain about our daily annoyances, we should remember what other’s are going through and find some perspective on our “adversity”

There is the daily life adversity and then there’s real adversity such as having a handicap, living with mental illness, suffering though a debilitating disease. And yes, these kinds of adversity have a plan as well.

It’s not whether if adversity comes but when, and what are we willing to do about it. What will our mindset be when adversity comes to our doorstep? Let me offer some approaches to adversity that will turn the tables on your troubles.

We don’t develop courage by being happy every day. We develop it by surviving difficult times and challenging adversity – Barbara De Angelis

I love the phrase “challenging adversity”. We should meet our adversity head on rather than try to avoid it. We should run into it rather than away from it.

We don’t have to let adversity, of any kind, steamroll us. We don’t have to hang our head and just “take it”. We can fight. We can do battle. We can tell adversity, “Not today and not on my watch?”

Always seek out the seed of triumph in every adversity – Og Mandigo 

One of the ways to challenge our adversity is to look for the upside. Adversity weighs on us physically but weighs on us mentally all the more. The mental toll of adversity can take us out of the game much earlier than we’d like. We have to face the mental onslaught of quitting, berating ourselves or worse.

Committing to finding the seed of triumph in our adversity is proactive. This mindset challenges the notion that adversity is a bad thing. We not only need to look for the triumph in adversity, but the seed of truth in it as well.

The seed of truth is what adversity is revealing about us. The quickest way to see if something will hold air, water, etc, is to pressurize it. If the container blows or springs a leak you know the container wasn’t made strong enough.

Adversity offers us a chance to see how we perform  under pressure; it shows us our weaknesses, which is not fun but it is profitable.

All the adversity I’ve had in my life, all my troubles and obstacles, have strengthened me… You may not realize it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you.  – Walt Disney

If Joseph, from the biblical story of the technicolor dream coat,  had seen the adversity that would come (beaten, thrown in a pit, sold into slavery, accused of rape, thrown in jail, etc.) I wonder if he would have run away from it or run into it. Maybe we should be glad that we don’t know the adversities that will come our way.

In the end, Joseph said to those who sought him harm, “What you meant for evil, God turned it for good”. Adversity will come, but it’s outcome can redeemed.

The human soul needs adversity if it’s to grow.

Job, a man who experienced adversity at a whole other level said,

“You are talking like a foolish woman. Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?” In all this, Job did not sin in what he said. Job 2:10

Mindset: Adversity comes from all kinds of places a fallen world, the devil (ur adversary) and yes, with God’s permission.

Here’s a last bit of advice, when adversity comes, don’t go through it alone.

A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity. Proverbs 17:17

Nothing noteworthy has ever been accomplished without faith mixed with adversity. Run into the adversity, not away from it.

Oh and that plan that adversity has,

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4

The plan, if we let it, is to make us mature, complete, not lacking anything.

Hows that sound?

Related Posts

Crash Test Youth Ministry

I was wondering one day, “I wonder how much it cost to do car crash tests?” My mind is an ocean of meandering questions like this. I was thinking of this because I was thinking of doing a short term program change in our youth ministry where I saw our...

read more

Six Questions To Get Your Seniors Spiritually Ready For The World

In the previous posts I shared how the different ways students could graduate. Now, the gate has been narrowed. Most states offer some sort of exit exam. What is the point of an exit exam?

“to make sure no students graduate or move on to other courses without proving they have mastered what they have studied.”

This begs the question “Have our students mastered what they have studied?” Never mind mastering what have studies, but what have they studied? How do we know if a student is ready to leave our youth ministry?

read more

Agreeing On The Word Success

Are you and your pastor on the same page when it comes to the definition of success? Success is a word that is truly open to interpretation and you and your Pastor could be inches or miles apart. Here’s we what the wider version of a discussion about success...

read more