Facing Adversity

I’ve been helping a friend of mine who is the president of a major company which is facing a lot of difficulties. I’ve been going there almost every day. He’s trying to figure out what would be the best way for them to stop losing money and to stop laying off people.

He had found it very easy to lay off people on the basis that it was good for profits, good for the business, and good for the stock price. But in the last few months he hasn’t been able to do that. On the one hand he has to do things like this. On the other hand he can’t. So it becomes a decision as to how many people does he hurt and how many people does he save.

We are living in difficult times. There is a lot of stress. Many people are losing their jobs and don’t have any work. It’s especially difficult when people are working very hard. They come to work every day and do what they are supposed to do. But because of things beyond their own control, whole departments, whole divisions are closed. It makes them wonder what do they have to do to keep their jobs and pay their bills and to continue with their lives. Some of these people have seen all their savings disappear because of bad and sometimes very dishonest decisions made by other people. Those are very difficult things to face.

If we have no underlying strength

of being friends with our Beloved,

of looking at something

beyond these things that come and go,

then these kinds of difficulties are even harder.

What happens is that we start to say to ourselves that the only thing of importance in my life is my job. The only thing of importance in my life is my children, my wife, my husband, my home. But all of these things come and they go. It’s not that they are not important, but they come and they go. They are important, but they come—and they go.

So if there is nothing else that we decide to identify with besides things that come and go, then, if something is taken away or if something doesn’t come, we’re in deep trouble.

I’m not saying that identifying with something that doesn’t come and go will remove all problems. As in this case, if somebody doesn’t have any work, it doesn’t mean that all of a sudden everything is going to be great and that it’s time to go have a party. No, that is not the case! It’s going to be difficult. It’s not easy. Many, many things have to be done in order to be able to survive.

But underneath all these things,

there is always a conversation

with the Beloved saying

I love you,

I rest in you,

guide me.

Without that whom do we talk to? Maybe we talk to a lot of well meaning people who want to give us advice about all kinds of things. But in reality, for our own sakes, we’ve got to have that internal foundation. That foundation is basically essential.

I don’t know how I got myself involved in this thing with my friend, but somehow or other I am involved in it. It’s the kind of a thing that is not easy, but it has to be done. Being there for the last few weeks has made me realize, personally, how blest I am. Maybe I was starting to forget that. I take things for granted, and I forget. When I face these things that have been affecting people’s lives, their families, their children, it reminds me again of the many blessings I have.



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