When you fall....

In a recent conversation with a close friend, we were grieving over several families dear to us that have been in or are still in painful situations.  Most of these involved things with their children but others were marital or individual issues.  As we teared up over their various heartaches, we marveled at how every one of these friends is hanging in there.  Despite mistakes and failures, they haven't given up.

This verse came to mind -
for the righteous falls seven times and rises again,
    but the wicked stumble in times of calamity

Proverbs 24:16

My friend grinned and said "you oughta do a post on that".  I think she's right.

How are folks  able to not only "survive" but in most cases "thrive" in the midst of wayward children, financial downturns, marital crises, parental rejection, even substance abuse? Especially if there's some fault of their own that made at least some of the mess???? 
To me, that's the most painful part - feeling like I own the blame of a mess, even just part of it.  There's something actually noble about bearing up well under problems that happen "to us" ...but when we know deep down inside that this "calamity" is (at least in part)  "by us", well, it's hard to bear. 

This verse tells us that the righteous man falls seven times - I can certainly identify with that!  Probably more the "seventy times seven"!  Boy, can I relate to the falling.  I have days weeks months where I feel, at best misunderstood, at worst, like I have offended every person in my path.  I don't know how you react when you "fall" but I often hear the whisper of temptation to "give up".  To just quit trying, because obviously, I can't get it right! 

What does the righteous woman do, though?  Yes, she falls, but she gets back up.

When calamity (aka - problems and failures) knocks us down, we have two options.
  One is to stay in the stumble.

The other is to get back up and try again.

What does that look like?

Here's some thoughts for today -
1.  Admit you fell. 
If calamity knocks you down, you can't get up unless you realize you fell in the first place. 
2.  Accept the responsibility that belongs to you.
While we're not responsible for everything that happens, we need to own our own falling. No blaming others.
3. Figure out what tripped you up.
If #2 wasn't humbling enough, this should help!!! 
Don't wallow in the failure with a pity party and don't figure all problems since the dawn of time are attributable to you - ask for input and insight and stick to the Truth.
4.  Purpose to try anew - "rise again".  Ask God what a "new try" looks like and then do it.
This verse tells us that the righteous and the wicked both fall....but the only mention of getting up belongs to the righteous.

I don't know what your "calamity" looks like today.  But my prayer is that you'll rise again.  Please don't quit.  Take a breather for a minute if you need replenishing, but please don't quit.  Don't give up on that child or that spouse or that friend...or yourself.