I recently read an article reflecting on the words ‘resignation’ and ‘acceptance’ and how very different they are.
Author Creath Davis points out that: ‘Resignation is surrender to fate. Acceptance is surrender to God. Resignation lies down quietly in an empty universe. Acceptance rises up to meet the God who fills that universe with purpose and destiny. Resignation says, ‘I can’t.’ Acceptance says, ‘God can.’ Resignation paralyses the life process. Acceptance releases the process for its greatest creativity. Resignation says, ‘It’s all over for me.’ Acceptance says, ‘Now that I’m here, what’s next, Lord?’ Resignation says, ‘What a waste.’ Acceptance says, ‘In what redemptive way will you use this mess, Lord?’ Resignation says, ‘I’m alone.’ Acceptance says, ‘I belong to you, Lord.’
There is a lot in there that I need to learn! The key I suspect is trust. Trust in a heavenly Father who loves us and who knows what He’s doing (even if we haven’t got a clue half of the time!) Someone has said that what’s important isn’t the ‘circumstances’ but rather the ‘innerstances.’ Quoting another … “What life does to us in the long run depends on what life finds in us.”
How true that is. On the world stage people like Nelson Mandela, Bishop Desmond Tutu, and Dr Martin Luther King Jr. faced unbelievable cruelty and prejudice yet within each was a strength that refused to accept resignation. Their courage and confidence, their refusal to give in to resignation affected nations and inspired millions. How we need world leaders like them today. But this quality of acceptance and trust isn’t reserved for the mighty, no we see it time and again in the lives of those we know. People who refuse to give in, to give up. Not because they are super human, on the contrary they know their weaknesses and they feel the pain, yet they take their brokenness, pain and anguish to the one they call Father. They know they are not alone. How about us? Where do we take our fears, our pain? Many of the people who inspire me have learned to trust God in the good times and at other times. Like the Psalmist they are able to say:
God is our refuge and strength, a tested help in times of trouble. And so we need not fear even if the world blows up and the mountains crumble into the sea. Let the oceans roar and foam; let the mountains tremble! There is a river of joy flowing through the city of our God; the sacred home of the God above all gods. God himself is living in that city; therefore it stands unmoved despite the turmoil everywhere. He will not delay his help.
It may be that you are going through a really tough time at the moment. If you are, can I encourage you not to go through it on your own? Talk to God, read the Bible, the Psalms are a great place to start. You can also contact Chris Burr at St Denys or myself we would love to talk with you. It may be that life is wonderful! If that’s the case great! Talk to God about it, read the Bible, start going to church if you don’t already go! Why? As I mentioned earlier … “What life does to us in the long run depends on what life finds in us.”