From Surviving to Thriving

Last week I was at my stepmom’s home, which she graciously opened up to our family for 268 days! (But who’s counting, she probably was!) So grateful for her and her generous hospitality.

But this week, I’m coming to you from OUR kitchen table, in OUR home!

On July 3 of last year, we had a house fire that devastated the whole house. I literally walked out with a pair of shorts, a shirt, and a hat. It began a journey of 268 days, filled with some of the lowest of lows (as you can imagine) but also some of our highest highs (which may seem surprising).

Some lessons you learn right away, when you’re in the midst of the storm (and I’ve shared some of those from that perspective). Some lessons you learn with the perspective like we’ve had this week, where your faith becomes sight and you SEE what you’ve hoped for, longed for, believed would be true someday and that day comes!

That’s where we are today.

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Some lessons you learn when the storm is months, or years back in your rearview mirror. Someday I look forward to share what I keep learning from this point on.

Today I want to share a lesson with the fresh perspective of feeling like we just crossed the finish line. The storm has ended, the clouds have parted, and the sun has come out!

I didn’t anticipate sharing so soon about this. I would have preferred to let it simmer a bit more in my soul. I don’t want to speak out of turn but, with the clouds that have gathered and the storm that’s been brewing in our world these past days I think there are some lessons that are appropriate to share.

Times like these…

It’s unknown. It can be scary. It can be uncomfortable. But, it can also be the pathway to finding real HOPE.

So this is fresh! It’s real. It’s raw. It’s unpolished. But, it’s from my heart, to yours. From my home, to yours.

How To survive and actually thrive in a crisis. How did we make it?

Well, in the same way that others have made it. In the same way YOU can make it in these tough days or the tough days you’ll face down the road.

I don’t know that I claim these to be ALL of the key ingredients but, they will definitely get you started!

Community – others to carry and encourage

We’ve been more or less “forced” into not meeting together but, this passage is directed at some who in the normal pattern of their life have selected “social distancing,” actually worse: “social isolation”.

It’s NOT about whether you’re an introvert or extrovert [the patterns of meeting that we’re used to have been changed]. It’s about recognizing that we were made for community.

We’re better together.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If

either of them falls down, one can help the other up but, pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. 11 Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? 12 Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.

What things have you been reminded of that you’re grateful for?

The people who were there when we “fell down” the day of the fire:

Mike & Julie Paterson, friends who are family, have been part of my personal and spiritual “inner circle” for years, my first phone call! I was in a daze and there’s been so much pranking between us he didn’t know to take me seriously! He was working far away but, was willing to drop and come. He called Julie and she came to take the dog.

My friend Lance Hurley, another of my first calls, wired money to help that day

My sisters, Christie and Cheryl, and brother in law, Mont, who got in their car and came up from Plainfield and Joliet went and got me shoes and took us to buy clothes.

My stepmom, Marcia, who didn’t miss a beat the day of our fire. When we fell down she picked us up and has given us a stable, loving home, by letting us invade her space for over 8 months!

Since then, countless others who have given money, provided food, been generous in so many ways, rallied others to our support.

My question for you is — who do you have in your life like that?

Do you want to dive deeper into this topic? Do you need more ways to move from surviving to thriving? Email leigh@woohooing.com for information on Passport to Growth and the rest of the story on how to thrive in crisis.

Author: Dave Rudin, Chicago Leadership Partners/John Maxwell Team Member/Tour Guide in Passport to Growth.

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