Today’s Word from Pastor Jim…
“What matters is to turn one’s predicament into a human achievement.”
I spend a fair amount of time giving pep talks these days, mostly to myself.
Victor Frankl’s life story has been a source of inspiration for more than 70 years. Frankl was a medical doctor practicing in Vienna, Austria. The annexation of Austria by Nazi Germany in 1938 changed everything for this Jewish doctor. In 1941 he would marry young Tilly Grosser; soon she was pregnant, they were forced to abort the baby. In 1942 the newlyweds of nine months, along with their families, were transported to Theresienstadt concentration camp. Frankl’s father, Gabriel, would die of starvation in the winter of 1943. After being transferred to Auschwitz his mother and brother were gassed to death. His wife Tilly would die of Typhus at the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.
After the war Frankl would resume his career at the Vienna Polyclinic hospital and go on to earn a PhD in Philosophy. His book, “Man’s Search for Meaning,” was released in 1946. It was written in nine days. “Man’s Search for Meaning” was translated into English and is regarded as one of the most influential books in American history.
A few Viktor Frankl quotes that may help you through this season of troubling news and uncertainty.
“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms — to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”
“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.”
“Those who have a ‘why’ to live, can bear with almost any ‘how.’”
“No man should judge unless he asks himself in absolute honesty whether, in a similar situation, he might not have done the same thing.”
“I do not forget any good deed done to me, and I do not carry a grudge for a bad one.”
“Everyone has his own specific vocation or mission in life; everyone must carry out a concrete assignment that demands fulfillment. Therein he cannot be replaced, nor can his life be repeated. Thus, everyone’s task is unique as is his specific opportunity to implement it.”
“I recommend that the Statue of Liberty on the East Coast be supplemented by a Statue of Responsibility on the West Coast.”
Viktor Frankl died in 1997 at the age of 92. The darkness of evil would not put out his light.
Blessed to be a blessing – we are one day closer.