Gratitude Day 655
Proverbs 21:23 – Watch your words and be careful what you say, and you’ll be surprised by how few troubles you’ll have.
Sometimes, the unexpected happens in life.
Things we can’t anticipate or expect.
There are times these unplanned things are wonderful gifts: a new baby, a new job, an unexpected phone call, a fun drop-in visit. These are the events that often fill our hearts and souls and we feel blessed.
And then there are the unexpected things that are, well, a bit more challenging. The phone call that changes everything. The diagnosis that completely surprises us. The person who decides they want life without you in it. Or the fall you didn’t expect.
The last one happened to my friend Rhoda. A few days ago, she was at a family reunion and fell. The net result is she broke a bone at the top of her shoulder. Surgery cannot repair it. For now, her arm is in a sling until she sees an ortho doctor next week. Healing is waiting for the bone to heal, which will not happen soon enough for my dear friend Rhoda.
It’s not what she planned to have happened. But it did. She would have preferred not to fall and now have her arm in the sling. But that’s not where life is right now.
When these unexpected things happens, it’s easy to become discouraged. Impatient. Wish that things would move more quickly than they are. Or in other situations, we wish that time would slow down so we would have more time.
Expected things force us to once again realize there are just some things that happen over which we have no control. Does God cause all of these things to happen? I don’t think so. Sometimes, bad things simply just happen. So often, we want to place blame and hold someone accountable for some unexpected thing that happens. But maybe, life just sometimes hands us things we cannot explain.
What we can control is HOW we respond. Will we get frustrated and discouraged? Will our faith be an asset to help us through the challenge … or will we get mad and angry at God? Both responses are acceptable and realistic. Of course, what the situation is will greatly impact how we respond and react. If it’s a blimp in the road, generally, it’s a bit easier to accept. When it’s a life-changing situation, well, that’s a bit harder to embrace.
Throughout our lives, thousands of unplanned things have and will happen to us. How do we view these situations? Do we look for ways to use our faith to get us through them? Or do we get discouraged and upset? We will have moments when both responses can and will happen with the same situation. And this is OK. But as the event draws on, what becomes the mantra we repeat to ourselves the most?
“This isn’t fair.”
“It could have been worse.”
“I will get through this.”
“I am thankful for the blessings I have, in spite of this blimp in the road.”
Or something else.
It’s easy to feel let down by God when something unexpected happens. It’s normal to get discouraged and feel frustrated. Troubles are real. Things WILL happen. Yet, we decide Who we will turn to when unexpected things happen. Will our faith sustain and guide us? Or will other thoughts get us down? We get to choose.
For knowing God is with us when unexpected things happen, I am grateful.
Lord God – Be with those people who feel like an unexpected situation has happened in their life. May Your presence be a constant comfort for them. When we get overwhelmed and wish things were different, may we turn to You as our constant comfort. Amen.
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