Maybe you can relate to one of these statements:
"Honey, the washer sounds a little funny."
"Come here and take a look at this, the computer screen says 'critical error'."
"I'm sorry, your washer isn't repairable"
"Hey - why won't the air conditioning turn on? The furnace isn't coming on either".
"Looks like something ate through the wires in your truck (cha-ching)"
"While we were fixing the wires, did you know you needed to have __________ fixed also?"
"What's that noise every time you shift when you're driving the car?"
"You know that noise that it made while it was shifting, it's not doing that anymore. The gearshift broke in two."
"Bubba (yes that's his name) wants to know how much we want for the car"
"M'am - it looks like mice ate through the wires in your air conditioning unit."
"You need to come back next week for more tests"
"We can't tell for sure from the tests. We will have to do surgery in 4 days."
"Honey take a look at these spots on my back."
"You have shingles." (which makes you contagious to your grandson, which means you can't see him for awhile)
We have heard every single one of these and quite a few more in the last several months. While none of them were life threatening and God provided the means to overcome all of them, frustration and disappointment have been nipping at my heels for awhile now.
It would be so easy to sit here and think about the negative. Because let's face it, the negative seems to come up in one way or another on a regular basis at certain seasons/times of life. Sometimes it is like a slow drip, other times like a tsunami.
These are just reminders of why it is so important to stay in the Word and to keep our eyes on Jesus. If we don't, we are likely to find ourselves swimming in a cesspool of defeat and discouragement. Sadly, discouragement is more contagious than the shingles and can be deadly to our faith if we aren't careful.
In each one of those statements above, there was a blessing. Albeit, I'm still trying to figure out the blessing of the shingles, but I'm sure it's there.* If, however, we had taken a 'woe is me' attitude, we would have missed the blessings.
In addition to the blessings directly related to each of those statements, we have seen God's hand at work in ways that make us speechless. He is so faithful.
I pray that you will keep your nose in the Word and your eyes fixed on the One who came to give us life and to give us life to the full. (John 10:10) Don't miss the blessing in the midst of the mess.
( *After I posted this and sat down, God reminded me they could have been much worse. So there is the blessing.)