Being Wise, Not Resigned

Many small businessmen lament the severity of the current recession and how greatly their businesses have suffered. Some have indicated that their revenue is down 50% from the previous year. They eagerly hope for the end of the recession and recovery.

But many experts say that recession is officially over. The stock market is improving and the national unemployment rate is dropping. The hardships that many Korean small businessmen are experiencing may not be temporary but a reflection of permanent structural changes in the U.S. economy.

When there are major structural changes to the national economy, some businesses decline and some businesses boom. Many Korean small businesses belong to the former category. It might be best to abandon hope that this recession will soon be over and that the business climate will turn favorably tomorrow, next month, or next year. Instead, they should seek a new line of business or learn to live without complaint, dealing with the new status quo.

Hoping and dreaming is a privilege for people, especially young people. But it’s not resignation but wisdom to give up hopes and dreams and accept reality when there is absolutely no possibility that they’ll be realized.

It’s a young couple’s privilege to hope that their marriage is like a fairy tale that ends “happily ever after.” But when they realize that either their spouses or they themselves don’t have the capability or aptitude to have such an ideal marriage, it’s not resignation but wisdom to give up hope for a fantasy marriage and accept their imperfect spouses, loving them anyway.

Everyone wants to be healthy, without disease or pain. But many people have illnesses, some of which are incurable. Most people, especially the elderly, live with some kind of pain because our bodies are like old cars that frequently break down for one reason or another. It’s not resignation but wisdom to accept that pain and live with it.

It’s not resignation but wisdom to accept limits and imperfections in this sin-infected world with the hope that your bodies will be perfect in heaven. It’s wise to be thankful and work hard on an unfulfilling job, to accept imperfect spouses and love them, and to serve God and people with pain-ridden bodies while living in this world.

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