January 19, 1998 – Roy Miller wrote in his Monday Morning Memo – “Moments of emotional recovery are the best times to think about problems you have not been able to solve. Great, creative insights follow times of great stress. It’s a law of the universe.”
Some of you are on the verge of some of the greatest, most creative moments of your life. Some of you have had long…trying…draining…moments of stress. Unlike anything you have ever experienced in your life or perhaps unlike anything you will ever experience again. You have to know and you have to realize that while the moment you have been enduring may seem incredibly tough…you are about to experience one of the most creative and perhaps the greatest moment of your life.
The moments that follow the stressful time you have been enduring will be one of the greatest times of your life. You’re thinking will be expanded, your endurance will be greater, and your mental stamina will be at its peak. The challenge is to keep your focus clear while enduring the challenge. Allowing yourself to dream of what you will accomplish when your through the challenge while still maintaining a clear focus on the challenge at hand.
When you begin to recognize the stress of today as a launching pad for greater success tomorrow you will no longer look at stress the same way. While it may still be tough and it may not be all that fun you begin to see it as a good training program…much like the training program that a runner embraces on their way to their first marathon. Much like the challenge that the freshman college student embraces when they leave home for the first time…living in a dorm with a stranger…taking a full load of classes and working a part-time job that involves almost full-time hours. Much like the challenge a child embraces learning to ride their bike without training wheels for the first time.
Why do we lose our willingness to embrace the challenges that will take us to the next point in our life? Do we grow up so much that we no longer want anyone to see us falling down? Do we lose our enthusiasm for growth and learning? Do we instead decide that we can somehow bypass the natural “law of the universe” as Roy Miller puts it…and find a way that we can “buy” our experience? Or do we think that we are able to forego the schooling process because of a certain family that we are born into?
The truth is that when you understand the quote above…you begin to understand that there are no shortcuts. And as long as you have a desire to experience more and to go places that you haven’t been before you will have moments and periods of stress. You will have challenges that you don’t understand because you are traveling somewhere that you haven’t been before. Don’t fret and worry about it. Instead, embrace it as a soon-to-be marathoner embraces a proven training program.
John 8:12-14 – “’When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.’ The Pharisees challenged him, ‘Here you are, appearing as your own witness; your testimony is not valid.’ Jesus answered, ‘Even if I testify on my own behalf, my testimony is valid, for I know where I came from and where I am going. But you have no idea where I come from or where I am going.’”
Here we read of Jesus...at the point of his greatest challenge and just moments after experiencing stress to the point of sweating blood. And yet just moments away from his greatest triumph and most creative insight known to this world. A law of the universe? I don't know if it proven enough to earn that title...but then again...perhaps?