Today our family had a “Do Over”. A “do over” is when everything first time round goes terribly and pretty much fails.

Last night was our family night. A time where we strategically gather all the kids still living at home and take some time to spend quality time together. It has to be strategic and planned into our week because everyone has so many things going on with the constant busyness of work, dance, sport, study, exams and their social lives. So last night we planned dinner and a favourite movie. But even best laid plans can fail, which is what happened last night. My husband and I were the taxi service in two different directions, one of our older girls was at work late, another was studying and cooking dinner for everyone. And that’s when our family night came unhinged. Pickups ran late, ingredients for dinner were missing and needed a dash to the shop, people were tired and grumpy, miscommunication happened, and before we knew it family night had turned into an evening of upsets, tired kids, frazzled parents and a big fail when it came to quality time together.

However one of the things my husband is amazing at is the ability to regroup, recover, and make the best of a bad situation. He decided that we would have a “do over”. So this morning after a last minute dash to the shops last night, everyone was up just after 7am to eat a massive freshly prepared breakfast of bacon and eggs, pancakes, yogurt and fruit salad, and hot chocolates. Then still in our PJ’s we chuckled and laughed as we watched the movie we missed out on last night. Our eldest daughter and grand daughter  visited early this morning and walked into a smiling, well fed, wide awake rest of their family. Plus got to eat some pancakes.

We managed a “do over”, and what could have been stolen from us and remembered as a terrible evening, has been replaced with one of the best family breakfasts and starts to the day we’ve had for a long time.

“Do overs” are important as they teach us the importance of learning how to recover from less than perfect situations, and recognise what we can salvage from a failure to be able to keep going. “Do overs” teach us how to trust God to bring something good out of every  situation.

God is like that. He works good out of fails, and disappointments.  “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose”. (Romans 8:28)

I’m really grateful for my husband’s God given gift in being able to just keep going, to think creatively and to make the best of a situation. It’s an admirable trait and one which is worth imitating and supporting. Often when we aren’t naturally that way inclined we can unthinkingly be the “party pooper” and throw up our hands in defeat. That’s when we need a reminder to have the attitude of “what can we salvage from this failure, what can we do to move forward, how can I be supportive of the someone who may be thinking creatively and “out of the box” to bring good into the situation”.

Today if you are facing a situation which hasn’t worked out as well as you’d hoped, or it’s just a “big fail”, be encouraged. Nothing we do is ever wasted if we learn from it, and one of the mercies of God is that we usually get to have “Do overs” if we take the opportunity to look for them, and think creatively. 

So if you have had a disastrous day, remember you’ve got tomorrow. If your time with others was a complete catastrophe, ask God how you can “do over” that time and make the next time you spend together better. God says we can “boldly approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need”. (Hebrews 4:16)

God is the great redeemer and restorer, and He loves to give us back in whatever way possible that which the enemy has stolen from us.

“I will restore to you the years that the locust have eaten” (Joel 2:25).

“Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you.
Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life”. (Psalm 143:8)

Prayer: Lord thank you so much for your grace and mercy towards me everyday. Even when I mess up, or things don’t go to plan you are the God who loves to bring healing and restoration. Help me to take heart and keep going, and when I need to have a “Do Over” show me how. In Jesus Name Amen.