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Shaken, But Still Standing

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the state of our world. It seems like the waves of crisis keep beating against the shores of the “things” in which we placed our hope and confidence - our businesses, jobs, health, government, homes, schools, etc… After bringing me the latest breaking bad news one day, my son Joshua asked me “what’s next?” I wish I could tell you that I gave a deeply profound response to his rhetorical question, but I just shrugged my shoulders, rolled my eyes and quipped “that’s 2020 for you”. I continued thinking about our brief exchange and found myself pondering / praying “what’s next.” As if in an answer to my pondering prayer, this quote flashed in my mind “Everything that can be shaken will be shaken”. While this saying isn’t a direct passage of scripture, there are several biblical references that come to mind.

King David declares in Psalm 16:8 “I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” (NIV). Former NFL quarterback & Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow discusses this scripture in his book Shaken: Discovering Your True Identity in the Midst of Life’s Storms. Tim says in his introduction “It’s tempting to define ourselves or measure our worth by the external: by how much money we have, by how we look, by the applause of others. It’s also tempting to determine our identity by our life circumstances. Think about this: Who are you when everything is going great… And who are you when your world is shaken? Sometimes it takes a challenging time to really find out…. When we are grounded in whose [italics mine] we are, not only can we handle the storms that come, but we can also begin to move forward in a more purposeful direction.”

Another bible passage that provides some context to this quote "Everything that can be shaken will be shaken" and Tim’s reference to the storms of life is the parable that Jesus gave in Matthew 7:24-27.

“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.”

Although the foundation isn’t visible under most ordinary conditions, its quality will certainly be revealed by the condition of the structure on top of it during times of storms. Two houses can appear identical from the outward appearance, but the strength of their foundations will reveal each house’s true structural integrity over time and during exposure to adverse conditions. The man who took the time to establish a deep and sturdy foundation reaped the long-term benefits of building his house upon the rock. The man who built his house on the sand to get quicker results in the short-term eventually experienced a disastrous end.

What does all of this have to do with my son’s question “what’s next”? None of us knows what’s next for 2020 or whether 2021 will be filled with a continuation of global crises. Regardless of the storms of life that blow my way, I want to have a strong enough personal foundation to not only survive, but to thrive in challenging times. I’ve done a lot of work to establish deep, healthy roots in the right areas and I’m blessed to now see the fruit of my labor. Based on the transformation I experienced from this personal foundation work, I created a 6-week virtual group coaching program entitled “Fortify Your Foundation” to help my clients build a deep, expansive personal foundation strong enough to hold up their big vision, purpose and potential. During this program, we explore the 4 pillars of a strong foundation:

  • Free Yourself - of limiting beliefs, tolerations and the past;

  • Center Yourself - around your needs, values and passions

  • Protect Yourself - with healthy boundaries, standards & reserves

  • Anchor Yourself - in spirituality, family & community.

I never imagined when I launched this program in 2017 that our world would be in the state of tumult that we’ve seen in 2020. Now, more than ever before, we need to fortify our personal foundation so that we’ll still be standing strong when the shaking finally subsides. Check out client testimonials and more information about how to register for the Winter 2020 session that starts November 4th.


Regina Ross is a certified HR & Change Management Practitioner and ICF-credentialed Executive Coach who helps leaders successfully navigate organizational and personal transformations. Contact Regina at ✉ or

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