The optimists among us say that when one door closes then another will always open but those of us who are pessimistic often proclaim that when one door closes, then another one is about to slam in your face. In a lifetime we all experience closed doors in one way or another, be it the loss of a job, the breakdown of a relationship or the death of a loved one. Disappointment and bad days are all part of living and we all know someone who years later can still not come to terms or function due ‘a door in their life closing’.
Why then can some people bounce back from loss quickly and others not. It is less to do with personality and more to do with resilience. This is your ability to withstand adversity and grow despite life’s downturns. The famous Japanese proverb, ‘Fall down 7 times but get up eight’ is a great mantra but a hard one to follow but you have only to watch a child take its first steps to know how resilience and perseverance pay off.
During his life, the great Nelson Mandela suffered many setbacks – discrimination, hardship, imprisonment, yet he triumphed in the end. Lauded with peace prizes he stated,
‘Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again’. Mandela is a lesson to us all as he turned many adverse circumstances into opportunities, always believing that ‘all was not lost’, no matter how desperate the situation.
Many psychologists have reflected that people who are ‘anchored by faith’ tend to show greaterresilience. Why is this? Perhaps faith teaches us not just to live for the day. As one beautiful hymn says, ‘set your heart on the higher gifts, on the things that come from your maker in heaven’. If people have faith, then they tend to cope better with adversity as they are less centred on the material things of this world and through the word of God get strength even on their worst days.
Jesus was a great role model for us in resilience as in spite of all the insults he received, the testing he suffered, he never lost sight of where he was going. He approached all his trials with grace and not grumbling. Psalm 37 23-24, ‘The Lord makes the firm steps of the one who delights in him; though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the lord upholds him with his hand’. So, if you have faced a closed door recently then remember, you may have no control over all the events that happen to you, but you can decide how you react to them. Proverbs 3: 5-6, ‘Trust in the Lord and he will direct your path’.
The clergy and parishioners of Newry Cathedral Parish would like to say how delighted they are that the Newry Reporter will continue their sterling service to our local community. They thank the proprietors and staff or the Newry Reporter for their support over the years.