How Do You Handle Challenges?

Jan 23, 2024

Well, We received the dreaded knock on our door Monday morning, from a uniformed Sheriff’s Deputy…

He handed us some papers and informed us that we were being sued.

That’s right, sued!

We have never been sued before. What was this all about? It was not a great feeling. However, I was faced with a choice - a choice of how to react. 

I was reminded of the following.

We may not be responsible for what happens to us, but our response is 100% our responsibility. 

So here’s what happened…

Allegedly, an Airbnb guest nearby one of our Nashville Airbnb’s was struck in the face with a piece of flying debris during a windstorm. They are alleging that it came from our home’s third story roof.

How could that happen? Nobody knows. We bought the brand new home in 2021 and have not had any construction work done to the home. It was a brand new home when we bought it 3 years ago.

When I received this news Monday it did not feel great. But, I was reminded of many quotes I have heard before.

“It’s not what happens to you, but you react to it that matters.”
- Epictetus

“Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.”
- Dennis P. Kimbro

The late great Jim Rohn said it another way, “It is the set of the sail, not the direction of the wind, that determines where you go. ” 

Ultimately, it is important to keep in mind that life boils down to choice. We cannot choose what happens to us, but we can choose how we will respond to what happens to us.

After going through the loss of my younger sister (39) ending her life, the loss of my younger brother (43) doing the same, having a child with cancer, losing my job at age 34 (17 years ago) with a large family to support,  and many other more significant life challenges, I have learned that as my good friend Robby Gallaty says, “Challenges are the college degree of character development.” 

In every hard thing we can learn something of great value. This thought always encourages me and I hope it does you too.

In addition, for every hard thing we go through we have gained knowledge and experience by which to better relate to, empathize with and encourage others when they go through something similar in the future.

I am not saying we should wish for hard times in life, they come naturally, but when they do come, it’s so important to have a winning mindset in order to maximize what we are able to learn through the process.

We must choose victor over victim.

Rather than asking..

Why me? 

We must ask…

What can I learn from this?
What is God wanting to teach me?
What character qualities can I develop through this?
How will God grow my faith and draw me closer to Him in the process?
Who will I be able to positively impact because of this?

These seemingly small but subtle mindset shifts can have game changing benefits.

So the next time life punches you in the face, remember, you may not be responsible for what happened, but you are always responsible for how you react to what happened.

Keep looking up! Focus on the benefits in the midst of the storm. Draw closer to God, trust Him more and keep putting one foot in front of the others and moving forward.

“I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.” Phil 4:13

You’ve got this my friend!