Adversities are events that we don’t look forward to. They are the disasters that set us back, the incidents which lead to outcomes that we rather not face. Adversity is the unfavourable situation that we run into or that arrives in untimely fashion.
Adversities have become more prominent in our daily lives and even if they are hard to anticipate, we are tasked to prepare for them.
It was implied that opportunity is the opposite of adversity.
It isn’t. Miracles are the opposite of adversities.
Miracles, like adversities, are events that disrupt our daily lives but unlike adversities, bring pleasant results, often accompanied with welcome benefits.
We usually categorise an event as a miracle when it is unexpected, spiritually uplifting, and just plain wonderful. Miracles are the awesome surprises that we classify as rare and we usually reserve them for those that arrive only once-in-a-lifetime and that are life-changing. To those that have strong religious beliefs, miracles are those attributed to a provident deity either as rewards for strong faith or as presentations of power.
But I believe miracles happen every day just as much and just as often as adversities. We experience disruptions from both, although we’d classify one as good and the other bad.
For many of us who call ourselves ordinary people who work hard to earn a living to support ourselves and others, we’d prefer not have disruption of any sort in our daily lives. If many of us were to choose, we’d rather have predictability than uncertainty. Disruption implies changing of plans and the likelihood of extra expense in resource and time. We have enough to do already so please let there be no disturbance if possible.
Unfortunately, disruption is a part and parcel of life. And we get it, big and small, just about every day.
We therefor try to anticipate, mitigate, and plan contingencies. No matter how much we try, however, there would always be one that we didn’t see coming.
Natural disasters, unexpected traffic on the road, the unannounced visit of a relative or friend, flight departure delays, and the unscheduled power failure. We undergo disruptions all the time.
But disruptions aren’t all bad. There can be good ones too.
These “good” disruptions are from the miracles that occur just as much the adversities that bring the “bad” ones. We may not recognise miracles because we are too busy managing the “bad” ones, we don’t consider them as miracles based on our expectations, or we don’t recognise the benefits outright.
What are examples of miracles that come with “good” disruptions?
- It’s the weather forecast for rain that turned out wrong and in which the day ended up sunny and nice;
- It’s the good friend who calls and whom we haven’t heard from for a long time;
- It’s the email of our CoVID test results that shows we are negative of the virus despite we being sick with cold symptoms;
- It’s the surprise gift from a sibling working overseas who just got a bonus and wanted to share;
- It’s the boss granting you permission to go home early because you finished a job ahead of time.
Some of us would discount these miraculous disruptions as mere events that don’t really brighten our day enough versus the adversities we also are facing.
This may be because adversities demand our attention and action. We become preoccupied and at the same time frustrated and downcast by the disruption we did not expect and want.
Unlike adversity, miracles don’t need to be addressed outright and don’t need to be acted upon immediately. The benefits have been felt and all that’s needed is to give thanks.
Giving thanks after all is not urgent; addressing adversity, however, is.
Adversities are seen as threats. Miracles are not. But as much as we need to focus on adversity more than we do for miracles, we should make sure that what we perceive as adversity is really what it is.
Adversities can be miracles in disguise. They can be clouds with silver linings. And the actions we take to address adversities may also result into potential miracles.
- A typhoon that disrupted our operations may have brought rainfall that replenished the nearby reservoir and alleviated a potential water shortage;
- The traffic standstill that is making us late for work gave us the opportunity to call clients via our smartphones in which we were able to collect some past-due accounts;
- Spending time with a relative who arrived unannounced ended up with the family becoming closer;
- The unscheduled power failure resulted in the family playing an impromptu board game that resulted in a cheerful and enjoyable night of bonding.
Miracles are the opposite of adversities. Either one doesn’t have to be earth-shaking; they both can arrive big or small.
We tend to preoccupy ourselves with adversities since they vie for our immediate attention. But miracles can be adversities in disguise or may be concealed in what may look like “bad” disruptions.
How we respond, how we perceive, and how we determine what our attitudes will be can turn some, if not all, adversities into miracles.