Bad Day Blessings

Have you ever had one of those days – a day when nothing seems to go right and you wonder why it’s all happening to you and if God will ever show up? I’ve had days like that and last Saturday was one of them. I spent a good portion of the day feeling sorry for myself and refusing to find anything to be thankful for or about.

The reason for my pity party was that I wanted to be outside working in the yard. The sun was shining and I had spring fever. But I was dealing with arthritic pain in my hips and lower back and it was a particularly bad pain day. Yard work was out of the question.

I decided to go outside anyway – to clean out my car. Wallowing in self-pity, I stepped out of the house into the warm spring air and grumbled my way down the sidewalk to the outbuilding where my car was parked.

As I was complaining my way to the car, I encountered one of the new neighbors living on our property (we recently rented our guesthouse to a young, Christian family who graciously offered to manage and care for our property). She was weeding one of the large flower beds in our yard and if the radiant smile that lit up her face was any indication, she was enjoying it immensely. We chatted for a few minutes before I proceeded to my car cleaning project.

By the time I was finished, our six year-old grandson had arrived to spend the night. Within fifteen minutes, he had rounded up half a dozen kids from the neighborhood who were running around the yard and bursting into our house for snacks and drinks. It reminded me of summer when our yard and pool reverberate with the playful shouts and joyful chatter of children.

Suddenly, while watching the kids play on the lawn and rope swings, I caught myself smiling. I heard God’s still small voice in the laughter of the children and felt his peace in my heart. My pain had not diminished but authentic joy and a sense of deep peace enveloped me as I stopped dwelling on “me” and my arthritic pain.

At that moment, I recognized that I am truly blessed. God has allowed pain and suffering into my life for a reason. There is no wasted pain or accidental suffering in God’s economy. Sometimes God reveals the purpose of pain and suffering. Other times he doesn’t.

Even when I don’t understand the purposes behind my pain and suffering, I am able to understand and fully experience every blessing he sends my way – even in the midst of my bad days. Bad day blessings are the best.


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