that it is our outlook
that confers values on our experiences,
and that nothing that occurs to us
is intrinsically good or bad.
The author of Always We Begin Again writes a lot about what he calls the twelve stages of humility. I commend it to you, but I won’t recite the whole thing. But one of the nuggets I found reminds me of the words of Frankel, in his work The Meaning of Life. It also is the message I try to give the people I counsel who are about to go to prison about attitude and how one can get so much out of the experience if you go into it with the right attitude.
I recognize it is hard and sometimes downright impossible to believe that “nothing that occurs to us is intrinsically good or bad” if you are facing serious illness or in the middle of what seems to be a tragedy. Yet, how many times have we come out of what seems to be an awful circumstance and told ourselves, “that wasn’t so bad” or “I learned a lot from that experience.”
I think the author hits the nail on the head when he uses the words “our outlook.” We are called to be content with what circumstances may place in our path, trusting in God, and looking for opportunity and value in both the good and the bad.