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it is what it is

By Susan Solomon Yem
August 24, 2020

Passages of the day: Click HERE ​to read today’s passages.

Job 12:1-15:35
1 Corinthians 15:29-58
Psalm 39:1-13
Proverbs 21:30-31

It is what it is is my least favorite expression because I always want to say, but it doesn’t have to be! I’m starting to think the better response might be, why is it what it is? Or what is the Lord trying to show me?

Years ago I read a book called Dark Threads the Weaver Needs by Herbert Lockyer. As the title implies, Lockyer envisions our lives as intricately woven embroideries. While the vibrant, colorful threads of joy and happiness make a beautiful picture, it is the dark threads – those times of sadness and suffering – that add depth and perspective.

More recently I read Viktor Frankl’s Man’s Search for Meaning. He says, “If there is meaning in life at all, then there must be a meaning in suffering. Without suffering and death human life cannot be complete. . . . Suffering ceases to be suffering at the moment it finds a meaning.”

Right now we’re living a season of collective suffering. I know that some may feel it more acutely than others, but even when our misery is unique to us, it is an experience to be shared. I think the meaning comes in the sharing. Lockyer says, “The divine purpose of suffering does not end with ourselves, but is meant to be a channel of blessing to others.”

One of my most enduring prayers has always been, “Lord, I am willing to accept anything in my life, if it can be used in the life of another.”

So, when my employer died and his teenaged daughter could not look at him in the casket, I sat with her and told her of my similar experience when my father died. And when a woman in Bible study caught her husband cheating, I could relate because the same had happened to me.

Rather than just accept the It is what it is, find the meaning.

To memorize:

Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

— 1 Corinthians 15:58

Prayer to start with: Lord, today I want to be still so I can see what it is that you're trying to show me. Help me be a blessing to others through my own experiences. Teach me your ways and help me understand. Amen.