Just how flexible are you?

You’re sitting as a passenger in an airplane during flight. You’re in a window seat, near the wing of the airplane. Predictably tucked in the pocket in front of you is the in-flight magazine, crash safety protocol and a puke bag. Nothing new to see here.

Bored, you glance out the window and notice the wing. Clouds flitter by at an alarming speed. Comforting because it means we’re still moving along at full speed. But as you look closer you begin to notice something. You notice the wing moving around, a little more than it should in your opinion. You follow it up to where it connects to the airplane. It seems to be jiggling around, as if the screws are loose. You start getting nervous, “Whose job was it to bolt that sucker to the side of the plane?” The more you look at it, the more you are certain the wing is going to fly off any minute now. Your eye finds the tip and you gasp as it waves up and down, several INCHES.

You want to nudge the stranger next to you, “Shouldn’t someone let the captain know?!”

Actually, engineers test the airplane wings to see how far they stretch them before they break and they actually do they push them up and they all the way to the point where they actually snap. The distance? Twenty five feet or more, according to Popular Mechanics. Smart people with MBAs and PhDs push the wing all the way up to 150 percent of the amount of turbulence the airplane wing can take during the worst storm Mother Nature can dish out. In other words, they’re planning for the very worst…and then some.

Those wings may look like they’re about to fall off but they will take all kinds of crazy. And keep sailing right through it all.

It’s not a new concept. When there’s an earthquake, buildings, bridges and homes are built to roll with the punches. They take a certain amount of stress, and keep standing tall.

More importantly, YOU are designed this way. Even though you couldn’t even touch your toes in gym class, your spirit is extremely flexible, built to endure.

You might look or feel like the very bolts holding you together are bouncing around like Mexican Jumping Beans. Maybe you look around and see everyone rocking it while you’re bobbling along barely holding on to some semblance of a decent “outer shell.”

God built you to withstand much greater adversity than you know. I’ve seen it again and again. The human spirit defying all logic. Miracles. People just like you who didn’t know they had it in them until they have been stressed and tested by a huge storm. And while the ride might be bumpy and your tummy starts feeling like a freaking butterfly exhibit, God built you to last. Being flexible is in your spiritual DNA.

So if you’re going through some turbulence, and I’m not able to be there in person to help pull you out of it, take some comfort from my post. Know that everyone goes through it. I’ve never met a person who made it to the top without a struggle. And typically, the greater the vision, the greater the struggle required to achieve it.

But knowing everyone goes through it doesn’t make it any easier, right?

So use this instead: rather than being furious, be curious. In other words, don’t react to your challenges with emotion (anger, rage, sadness, etc.). Instead, fill your soul with a childlike curiosity that will lead you to answers. Doing so takes the focus off of your bummer situation and on to learning from it. Because nobody can control the challenges that come our way, but we can control how we respond to them.

Listen to me, I’m starting to sound like my dad. Maybe that’s a good thing…he was pretty flexible.