None of us chooses this uninvited companion. None of us welcomes this “friend” to cozy up alongside us as we live our lives. Yet, at one time or another, we will find this unbidden guest knocking on our door.
Adversity is the uninvited companion that names the un-planned-for misfortunes, challenges, and trials we face being human and living in this world. Right now, I have a precious friend who has an uninvited companion called cancer nipping at her heals. It’s not the company she or I want for her—or anyone. Yet I’m amazed as I watch her walk with fierce honesty and fragile hope alongside this devastating diagnosis.
Adversity is a fact of life. It’s a fact of everyone’s life—lest we think for a moment that because we have faith in God and work hard to travel the “narrow path” that we are somehow exempt. We’re not. Suffering, hardship and tragedy are no respecter of peoples. The difference may only be in the fact that some, amid adversity, seem more aware of and able to receive God’s inexplicable care.
The Uninvited Companion also refers to the title of a book written by our dear friend and fellow spiritual director, Scott Shaum. Scott, and his wife Beth (who happen to be retreating at Fall Creek Abbey even as I write) serve with Barnabas, International, an organization offering support to global workers around the world. And they both know this uninvited companion quite well.
On this Shout-out Thursday, we are supremely honored to introduce you to our friends, Scott and Beth; to bring to your awareness Scott’s book; and to introduce you to their work. And we are genuinely thankful for Scott’s gracious endorsement of our book, When Faith Becomes Sight. Thanks a million, Scott!