“Bad things do happen; how I respond to them defines my character and the quality of my life. I can choose to sit in perpetual sadness, immobilized by the gravity of my loss, or I can choose to rise from the pain and treasure the most precious gift I have – life itself.” ~Walter Anderson
The song ” It is well with my soul” by Horatio G. Spafford is said to have been composed when he seemingly had lost his children and the better part of his riches. It depicts a man anchored in faith and wet in the spirit not by tears of the tortourous elements of this life but of resilience and fortitude in God. His confidence and joy remained undented and are embodied in each line of the song’s lyrics:
- When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well with my soul.
It is well with my soul,
It is well, it is well with my soul.
- Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ hath regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.
- My sin—oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!—
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!
- For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live:
If Jordan above me shall roll,
No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life
Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.
- But, Lord, ’tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait,
The sky, not the grave, is our goal;
Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord!
Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul!
- And Lord, haste the day when the faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.
Winston Churchil once quipped “Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.“
Where do you draw such robust enthusiasm and tenacious joy? The ruffle that any kind of loss brings is unsettling and can remain a nagging quiz to our humanly minds and bears like no other heavy burden to our hearts. I believe only faith in God is this achievable.
This last Saturday, I was privilledged to catch up with my TV. The hours we clock at work and attend to other pressing matters many a times make it almost impossible to sit infront of the TV and watch anything. We always glance as we rush about or stare at it as our brains churn unto other issues. I am grateful time availed itself to watch the TV. I caught up with a movie that was showing on Star Gold channel named Club 60.
The movie is not your common bollywood flick with a villain and a hero. Far from it, this is an all engaging story around the losses that life brings. The story starts on a sombre note when Dr. Tariq & Saira loose their only child and son. This not only unsettles them but takes a heavy toll on the father Dr. Tariq who even attempts to take his own life. The wife Dr. Saira suggests they move from Pune to Mumbai. They move into the a flat they had bought for their son Iqbal. They are met by an overly jovial and friendly neighbor Manubhai.
Manubhai is a very cheeky character – he is frivolous with life and goes about with full abandon. He is keen on recruiting the new couple into the Club 60. He comes out as a very nosy neighbor – he shows up unannounced – speaks his mind and heart – quick to indulge anyone and everyone in his chatter.
He is oblivious to the loss the couple are coming to terms with. He is confronted by Dr. Tariq when he unexpectedly pops into their flat quite late to ask for ice cubes. Even then his enthusiasm and joy is unruffled. He comes back with their common friend from Club 60 Dhillon also grappling with a loss of his own and had called at Manu’s. He changes the mood of the couple from sombre to celebratory.
In the whole movie it unravels the loss of each of the club 60 members loss behind the facade they put out for all to see. It showcases their struggle to adapt and steps towards generous living. This startles Dr. Tariq into the reality that he is not the only one who has lost – to his surprise he learns that Manu faced the flogging that life can bring and still afforded to smile and live free.
My pick from the movie is that there is a lot to gain even when we have lost. David Sirlin aptly puts it in his book Playing to Win: Becoming the Champion that “Losing is part of the game. If you never lose, you are never truly tested, and never forced to grow”