This week I had a reminder that we can’t lump our whole day in the good or bad pile because some moments in our day were great and some were not. We have to take each moment and value it for what it’s worth. If some moments were terrible, then we can give them over to God and ask Him to lift the burden of them and then determine to focus on one of the better moments in our day.
To expect that everything is always going to be exactly how we want it, with no upsets or messing with our plans just sets us up for failure, disappointment and angst. It’s just not practical to expect and require that every single moment in our day is going to be perfection. Actually sometimes the less than perfect moments are the ones we learn the most from, and which God uses to bring people together or pleasantly surprise us in some way.
When we travelled to Europe a few years ago with five of our children we had a series of unexpected moments, which didn’t go to plan. I fainted on a London train as we were organising to pick up our vehicle to travel to the Lakes District in England. We had all our accommodation booked for the night, and we thought everything was organised. However the paramedic at the train station took one look at me and said, “I think you are all going to get stuck in weekend traffic for 5-6 hours; go to Wales instead.” So we set off to Wales, which was only two hours drive away. However on arrival we discovered every form of accommodation was booked out for the night and we literally had nowhere to sleep for the night. Not a great moment! Left with no alternative we chose to sleep all seven of us in the car, or should I say small bus.
The funny thing is that if you ask our children today what they remember from our trip they would say the night in the car was a highlight. They will all start laughing and retelling their side of the story, and who sleeps weird and takes all the room. Our eldest son Ben will declare the loudest that he slept in the boot!
Through our night in the car the rest of our holiday accommodation was a lot better because all the squabbling about who had to share a room with who was no longer such an issue and everyone had a new appreciation for a comfy bed. Perspective and thankfulness are powerful and I’ve found that it’s often in the moments they don’t go to plan that we discover and see things and people in a new light.
The bible says to give thanks in everything. That doesn’t mean we thank God for the terrible moments or see them as something He has sent us. It instead means that IN everything we give thanks that He is in control. That He can and will turn things around for us, and to never let go of our confidence in His love and goodness towards us.
“In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.“ (1 Thessalonians 5:18)
I’m learning that we shouldn’t write off a day just because there are a few bad moments. God has a way of working miracles out of our messes, and everything when placed in His hands will be okay. To be honest it often works out better than we initially planned.
Next time you are faced with a mess of a day or a situation that’s full of difficulties, don’t despair. Instead look for and start to expect the miracle in the mess that God is working on for you, and give thanks for it in advance.
“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8:28)
“He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:32)
Prayer: Lord thank you that you have my life in your hands and that with you everything is going to be alright. Please help me to enjoy the great moments in my day, and to stop and be thankful for them. When not so great things occur, please also help me to give them over to you so that you can help me through them and cause something good to happen from them. In Jesus Name Amen