Crisis Equals Opportunity by Gary Ellis


Crisis. Catastrophe. Calamity. Troubles. Trials. Danger. Difficulty. Disaster. Predicament.  Plight.

These are words that repel us.  Frighten us.  Depress us.  Stress us out!  But…


…the truth is…all of those word descriptions of the events we face actually have the potential of becoming turning points.  Instead of equaling doomsday and a point of no return, they can be watersheds of opportunity.

When my wife was diagnosed with cancer, I thought the world could actually be coming to an end…at least my world.  I didn’t know how I was going to survive without her.

Now that we are on the other side of the looming tornado and she is cancer free, we are convinced on so many levels that it was one of the best things to happen to us.  I say “us” because it happened … albeit in a different way…to me, too.

None the least, it had a huge impact on the way we eat and drink.  We’d been planning to do better.  But…you know…a better word for planning is often procrastination.  We say we’re planning <uh-huh> but we’re usually putting it off…procrastinating.  Planning sounds so mature and wise.  Procrastination…well, you get the point.

There’s nothing like a crisis to break the back of procrastination.  It’s really kind of weird.  I don’t understand why, but pain is a much stronger motivator than pleasure.  You’d think that pleasure would have equal drawing power…but it doesn’t.

The Chinese word for crisis is a combination of the words danger and opportunity.

The bible book of James says, “Consider it all joy when beset by various kinds of trial.”  Jesus said, “In the world you will have tribulation…BUT…be of good cheer because I have overcome the world.

I think you will agree that this requires a complete change in our mindset.  It doesn’t even sound sane to consider trials as a joyful opportunity.  But that particular line of thinking in James Chapter 1 says that the potential outcome is “wanting nothing.”  In other words, “fully supplied.”

So, doesn’t that beg the question…maybe I need trials if I’m going to prosper?  I guess wishing a trial on yourself is a little nutty.  However, various trials and tribulations are part and parcel of living on planet earth. So…

Instead of running away from crisis and calamity, run to the God Who…

  • Is not surprised and taken off guard
  • Is equal and more to anything that arrises
  • Who loves you passionately (regardless of how you often accuse Him in the trial)
  • Who has more than enough wisdom and power…

…to take you or (them/him/her) either over, under, around, or through that MOUNTAIN.

This isn’t more psycho babel or PMA (Positive Mental Attitude).  In reality, our emotions are very much trained to react negatively to trial.  Frustration and its cousin, depression are Johnny-on-the-spot to shake, rattle, and roll us.  Truthfully, feeling victorious or at least somewhat positive is not the point…right away anyway.

Our emotions are well trained to look at what the eyes see and our logic reasons. So, instead of looking at how we feel, we need to re-train our emotions by trust filled actions we employ.

Crisis need not be your enemy.  In fact, the crisises of life can become golden opportunities of better things.

Now to the hard part.  Taking it from accepted theory to practical action.

Share your story of how crisis became opportunity in “comments.”  Your story may help someone who really needs it, today!

Gary