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Your Misfortune is an Answer to Someone’s Prayer

Last week in When Asking for Help Backfires, I described what happened when I asked for help facing my fears about driving solo to Death Valley, California. I received a wave of emails—your encouragement and tips mean so much! Thank you.

But I didn’t mention one of the main causes of my anxiety: I survived an attempted rape during a home invasion when I was 17. Below, I share links to my experience.

First, though, I have to tell you a story I can’t stop thinking about. I read it in Prem Rawat’s book Hear Yourself: How to Find Peace in a Noisy World.

Her flat tire answered his prayers

One day a young woman was cycling to an important job interview when her bike ran over a sharp rock and got a puncture. 

“This is terrible,” she thought. “Unless I can fix this tire, I’m not going to get the job.” 

She started to pray for a solution.

Around the next corner, a young man was sitting outside his bicycle repair shop. 

“This is terrible,” he thought. “Unless I get a customer today, I’m going to lose my business.” 

And he began to pray for a solution.

Your misfortune is an answer to someone’s prayer

“You see, one person’s misfortune can answer another person’s prayer,” writes Prem Rawat in Hear Yourself: How to Find Peace in a Noisy World. “But the deeper and more powerful form of prayer is when we simply give thanks for what is, not what might be.”

Giving thanks isn’t just an expression of the peace and joy inside of us. Gratitude nurtures and feeds those feelings, making them bigger and stronger. Gratitude grows peace, joy and love.

My survival story

In How I Survived an Attempted Rape During a Home Invasion I describe what happened when I was 17 years old. I was living alone in Edmonton, Alberta—and that was the last time I lived alone for over 10 years.

How I Got Away From a Man Who Broke Into My House at 3 a.m.

“I used to think I was safe at home,” I write in How I Dealt With an Intruder in My Bedroom in the Middle of the Night (blog post). “Now I know there isn’t any one single safe place. Some places seem safer – or more dangerous – than others, but one never knows for sure.”

Sometimes I need to remind myself not to live in fear or anxiety. Most of the time I live in abundance, freedom and joy. When I falter, I find it helpful to journal and write articles such as Overcoming Fear of a Solo Road Trip in the United States.

Gratitude feeds my joy, faith and peace—especially now that I realize my misfortune might somehow answer someone else’s prayer. We’re all in this together 😊

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Uprooted She Blossoms Laurie Pawlik Kienlen

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1 thought on “Your Misfortune is an Answer to Someone’s Prayer”

  1. Loved your book Laurie. It was so healing for me. I feel so blessed to have read it. It was given to me to me by young daughter when we were in the library. It was synchronicity. My sister stopped talking to me after I was no longer of use after my dad died and my brother has so much anger toward me saying I never helped him in his life! There has been such pain and barrenness in this and grief!
    Your book helped me to understand I need to forge a path with those who do love me, see my beauty and I can love them unabashedly! I am blessed with 2 unbelievable loving children. My husband has also been a strength in my life. Our relationship is not what I expected. I wanted to be a princess adored. But he is there like a string rock keeping me close. And at the same time giving me room to grow.
    I have a pretty successful business in Healthcare that gives me financial independence but also gives me flexible time ( way more valuable!).
    I love your adventurous spirit and views as they relate to the bible. So helpful and discerning.
    Wishing you a most maxing adventure!
    Blessings!

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