Our Approach to Life

I have a vivid memory of two back-to-back nights in Chicago. One evening I met with a good friend who informed me she was leaving her husband, also a close friend. "He doesn't meet my needs," she said. "I know he tries to be a good husband and good father, but I've found someone better. I'm leaving him." After listening to her, I talked about the difficulties all marriages face and reminded her of her husband's good qualities and all that she would be losing. She agreed with everything I said but had already made up her mind. I left that meal with a heavy heart, knowing my wife and I had lost one of our best couple friendships.

The very next night I attended a celebration organized by a young widow whose husband had died of brain cancer. On the night that would have been Chuck's thirty-second birthday, she was holding a party in his memory. I knew the agony they had been through during his surgery and prolonged treatment. Lynn now faced the double burden of paying off medical bills and supporting two children as a single mother. Still reeling from the news of my friend's impending divorce, I went to Lynn's house with a sense of foreboding.

I heard not a word of complaint or regret that night. Lynn passed around photos and had each of us call up memories of her husband. We laughed, and cried, and Lynn pulled out a guitar and sang some of his favorite songs. She talked about the good times they had shared together, his corny jokes, the cartoons he drew, the intimacy of walking together through the progression of his illness. "I will always miss him," she said, "but I'll always be grateful for the exciting few years we shared together. Chuck was a gift to me:"

On consecutive nights I saw a stark difference in two approaches to life. One resents loss and wants more. One celebrates life as a gift, something to remember with gratitude. I ask God for that spirit regardless of my circumstances.

Yancey, Philip. Prayer, Does it Make Any Difference? Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2006, p. 276-278.

Receive our free newsletters

The Illustrator: This daily newsletter is dedicated to encouraging everyone to look towards Jesus as the source of all the solutions to our problems. It contains a daily inspirational story, a Bible verse and encouraging messages. HTML and plain text versions available. 


The Nugget: Published three times a week, this newsletter features inspirational devotionals and mini-sermons dedicated to drawing mankind closer to each other and to Christ.

Visit Answers2Prayer

Subscribe Here:
The Illustrator
The Nugget

Your email:

Please be aware that you will receive a confirmation message via email. Once you receive it, please click on the link mentioned in the email. If you have problems please email us.