“Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterward.”
I’ve always said I enjoyed finally reaching 30 because I felt I could be considered “experienced”. Yet, being experienced and learning from experience are two totally different concepts.
Experience is a humbling reality to be at the pointy end of.
Accidents are classic of this phenomenon. These are bittersweet experiences. The experience is embittering, but the learning is sweet — some small compensation for the cost of pain and embarrassment.
Thanking God Anyway
Somehow we must find God’s lesson for us in these experiences. This is the Christian’s challenge. It’s a challenge of discipleship — no apprentice is trained without instances of humiliation. It’s part of the human path.
It’s after the experience, and into the lesson, that we can see the truth was ever-visible and not hidden from us. We may even see the numerous occasions beforehand that we were saved from such experience.
Regaining our composure is best done by thanking God anyway. Yes, we may not be able to control life, or fully control these negative experiences we have, but we can choose to learn from them.
That’s the control we can have. That control is a safe and useable power under the guise of discipleship.
© 2011 S. J. Wickham.