Tough Times Revisited

The Guideposts editor-in-chief shares how faith can help overcome tough times.

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 A couple blogs ago I was bemoaning the wet weather we were having this summer, the Biblical deluge, especially on weekends. It wasn't just that it was raining on weekends; it was raining HARDER on the weekend than the rest of the week. So now that we are entering our second perfect summer weekend I think it is only fair of me to acknowledge the blessing of perfect weather. Today is gorgeous!

The weather is a little like the economy—you take the good with the bad. Good times follow bad times follow good times and so on. But the reality, almost a year into this deep and tenacious recession, is that people are hurting. They are really struggling and I noticed that more out here in the country (I'm writing this at my usual Great Barrington coffee spot, Uncommon Grounds). Few people I talk to expect things to get better soon. In fact a lot of folks think things will never be the same.

I've never been one to subscribe to the notion that poverty is somehow ennobling, that it protects people from the corruption of wealth. Most people would take their chances with the material wealth, I think. Yet what I’ve learned is that in their struggles, so many people discover opportunities for growth, both personal and spiritual.

God doesn’t bestow hard times on people but I think faith becomes tested and therefore more real in difficult circumstances, be they economic or otherwise. Looking back over my own life, I’ve seen that the greatest growth has always occurred in the periods of greatest pain. It is in those times of pain and struggle that a power greater than ourselves is closest.

If you’d like to read some great Guideposts stories about people overcoming tough times, go to our Tough Times page. Meanwhile, have a wonderful weekend!

Edward Grinnan is Editor-in-Chief and Vice President of GUIDEPOSTS Publications.

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