Updated: Dec 26, 2021
What if we didn't see things as good or bad? No doubt there is joy and suffering, it's true. And times that are joyful are surely more enjoyable than times of suffering, right? But what if suffering took on a different meaning for us?
What if we saw times of suffering as a call to action, a sign of the need for change? What if they are times not to become beaten down, but instead to assess where we are spiritually, mentally, & physically - to shift our priorities and perceptions? What if our suffering is trying to show us that we are not listening, or that there is an answer we are not seeing?
What if suffering, in its most divine sense, is a chance to expand a virtue, or the best way we could hope for to learn to forgive?
What if the actions of people that seem to cause us the most suffering - sometimes those closest to us - are actually blessings in disguise, opportunities to become more like God?
In our anger, pride, or fear we may miss the true, spiritual purpose for our hardship. We may see suffering as something 'wrongly' placed upon us, when in reality it is the very best teacher we could be privileged to have; the most effective method for learning lessons we never otherwise could.
Is it possible that we knew before this life that we would face these challenges? Is there a further possibility that we even knew a fellow brother or sister would be the tool life would utilize for such things?
Maybe the frustrating things that others do are not a chance for us to grow angry or self-righteous, but instead to practice understanding, compassion, and forgiveness. Maybe they're times for us to look within ourselves and seek to understand why we feel the anger, fear, or pride that we do, instead of wasting bandwidth wondering at the mistakes of another person.
What if there were no other way we could rightly learn virtues of compassion, resilience, and forgiveness? Would the suffering be worth it?
Perhaps we can learn to see the trials in our lives as necessary, natural parts of existence. There is Yin and there is Yang. No matter who we are or what stage of life we are in, we will inevitably come up against both light and darkness.
Maybe we need not be surprised the next time we find ourselves in heartache, suffering, or sadness. Perhaps we need to simply understand that it is needed and that we can grow through the experience to discover the answers God has for us.
Whether we learn from our experiences in this life or the next, all things can work together for the long-term benefit of our expansive and infinite journey as immortal beings.