Although the world is full of suffering, it is full also of the overcoming of it. — Helen Keller
With an hour to spend in my own thoughts today — sitting outside in the Brown County IGA shelter, watching tourists and residents bustle around like ants consumed by their own lives and tasks — I pondered suffering.
What makes some people suffer more than others? Is it simply a devotion to suffering in one’s life that makes her appear to experience more trials? Or is it a persistence for overcoming that makes others seem to suffer none at all?
In each of the cars and trucks that rumbled past, drivers and passengers face their own demons. Some fall apart or become consumed with or thrive in the drama. Others keep troubles in perspective and overcome. What about a person’s mentality or personality makes that distinctive difference? Why does one person suffer and another overcome?
Choice is the key, because choice determines perception.
Do you chose to see life or a situation through suffering eyes or overcoming ones?
Do you chose to let fear of failure keep you from pursuing dreams or becoming successful?
Do you chose to lie and destroy relationships, and then make excuses to avoid responsibility?
Do you chose to learn from life’s lessons? Do you realize that each trial and every action and all that happens to us on this planet, everything, is part of a very short journey breathed out in a puff of life that dissipates far too soon?
We can chose to overcome, or we can chose to suffer. No one makes that decision for us. It is ours alone to decide.
For as much suffering as there is in this world, just as Helen Keller said, there is just as much overcoming.
I’ve learned a person just has to decide on which side of that perspective she wants to be.