#Blessed

This topic has been on my mind since the hashtag first appeared, ever so long ago. I wrote this piece for my church newspaper and it was received well, so I thought I’d try it out here. A bit different fare, but I do hope you enjoy.

“Blessed” is one of those great Christian words that has caught on with society. You’ll see it all over social media, and it pops up often in conversation.

“It’s a sunny day and I’m outside to enjoy it! #Blessed”

“No traffic today. #Blessed”

“Test results came back negative. #Blessed”

But it does cause you to wonder, in those moments of pain and suffering, when the day is not full of sunshine, when you’ve gotten bad news, when you’ve surpassed your last straw, are you still blessed?

A friend of mine has been in the midst of a horrific ordeal over the past month. It’s the kind of experience that can make you angry, bitter, disillusioned — mostly when it comes to your relationship with God and how you feel your life ought to go.

But my friend is one of those thoughtful types, and from the beginning he had what I would consider a motto. “There’s nothing good about this, but I wouldn’t trade this experience for anything.”

He knew that he didn’t have to enjoy this trial. He didn’t have to be happy that it was happening, but he also knew that this experience had woken him up to a wealth of God’s love that he’d never before been able to witness. He understood he was blessed.

He knew it despite all the bad news, all the pain, all the suffering, all the confusion, and even through those dark moments when the fear and anger can be overwhelming. In those moments there doesn’t seem to be any blessings in sight.

That’s the real trick to blessings, I think. Blessings can be found in the moment, but more often than not we find blessings at the end of long, hard, scary roads.

Sometimes those roads seem never ending and we lose a bit of faith and hope. But it’s been my experience that often the harder I have to look for a blessing the more I treasure it.

We are children of a loving father. He is a God that loves to richly bless. It’s important that we never lose sight of his love for us and that we’re able to remember, despite the worst, “there may be nothing good about this, but I wouldn’t trade this experience for anything.”

Let us look for God’s blessings, for they are found in all parts of life.

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