Finding the Silver Lining

silver-lining

Monday was a great day.  I had productive meetings, got several new projects moving, and had plans to go to an advance screening of a wonderful new movie with friends.  I picked up the kiddo and thought it would be good to run home and let her change clothes before we headed to the theater.

 

Upon walking into the kitchen, I was met with something like this.

kitchen_flood_124

With the help of my neighbor we were able to get the cause of the water stopped, but panic had already set in.  Looking out into other rooms of the house, I knew this wasn’t going to be a walk in the park. 

Now, I manage stress pretty well.  Sure, I have my five minute meltdowns in the bathroom on occasion. But when tragedy hits, I can jump in and take care of business.  But this mess…this unplanned chaos…hit me hard.  And I knew right then that I was going to have to be very careful about how I handled myself, or I’d make things worse.  It was while sucking that second load of water out with the wetvac that I decided I would look for just one silver lining and that would help me manage my emotions.

It never ceases to amaze me how God takes our baby steps and uses them to sharpen us.  That one simple act of making a decision on how my attitude would be through the storm has made the last few days unexpectedly inspiring.

  1. I have had an opportunity to be “salt and light” to people who work hard and are often treated unfairly because they see people at their worst.
  2. I am truly blessed to have great insurance and money in the bank–both of which have been needed this week.
  3. Because we’ve been treating the people working on our house kindly, we’ve gotten great service from them.  The folks from State Farm, Service Master, DAC, and GE have each given more than they had to.
  4. I was already plotting out a renovation on the house.  While a sucky way to get there, I will now be getting new flooring in two rooms that weren’t previously in the budget.
  5. Tough times bring out true friends.  In the midst of a bad week, we’ve witnessed people offering their best to us.
  6. There have been some really cute men sweating on our behalf 🙂

I learned something Huge this week.  And even as I sit here typing this post, I am connecting the dots to another situation.  I’ve been working through something, and have let my attitude drive my decisions in the wrong direction.  What a profound reminder I’ll have from now about the power of clear decision making in determining how to look at and live in tough situations.

How has looking for the Silver Lining in bad situations reshaped your thinking?

8 thoughts on “Finding the Silver Lining

  1. Well, you’ve certainly got me beat on the old “So, anything big happen this week?” question. It says a lot about you that you’re looking for the opportunity to grow and learn from hardship. What if more of us took that attitude every day?

  2. Wow… Jen I can’t imagine how tough this must have been, praying for you guys. Really encouraging post, thanks. 🙂

  3. Hi – found your site through twitter. Nice site and great post.

    Super truthful sentence …
    “It never ceases to amaze me how God takes our baby steps and uses them to sharpen us.”

    I was in the hospital for 2 months following massive injuries in an accident. My nurses were angels – all of them, except 1. Jane* did her duties, but was always in a hurry, not seeming to care if she hurt me (more) but doing what she had to do as fast as she could. After a few days of this, I was not happy with her and was going to ask the nurse supervisor to not ever let her in my room. But somehow an internal nudge had me asking God for help. I felt useless laying in bed and I realized that even here God could use me. I could help Jane be a better or a worse nurse by how I interacted with her and I could help her see me (and her other patients) as people, not duties. Thank God, his spirit stepped right up and by the time I left the hospital, Jane and I were buds and she called me later, just to see how I’m doing!

    *changed name.

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