How much crap do you deal with on a daily basis? If you have young kids at home or are a livestock farmer, probably more than average. If you work with others who are not very good at their job, you may find yourself dealing with the consequence of their actions as well as yours. Regardless of what you do for a living, you eventually find yourself cleaning up messes caused by someone else. Sometimes my kids ask me what are we going to do today, and on more than one occasion I say, ‘Probably cleaning up things, because that’s what we do every day.’ Whether those are messes caused by the kids, the cat or dog, myself, or just everyday chores like garbage, dirty dishes, laundry, and other things around the house, there is never a lack of things to take care of. Occasionally, there are other things that seem to come along and interrupt our lives as well. The past 24 hours, I’ve spent over 4 hours clearing off snow at a couple places around town and am more sore now than I have been most any other time this past year, so there are pros and cons to an unplanned Winter workout. How do you react when you have to deal with things you didn’t plan on, or that just seem to pile up when you ignore them?
“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. Matthew 5:43-45
Some complain that 2020 is just a bad year and chalk-up any bad thing that comes their way to just another insult to injury for the year. From the Covid pandemic, to changes we had to make in our daily lives to the normal challenges of life, there are things we encounter every day that we could become discouraged about. But are there good things that also happen throughout each day and when we look back on the year as well? Our attitudes and source of hope each day can have a have a huge influence on our outlook on live and how we deal with things that are seemingly out of our control. We like to think we have a say in what will happen to us each day and often plan out how things will go, but we soon realize that is not always the case. When little things or big things don’t go as planned, we can get frustrated with the situation we find ourselves in. Our first inclination is usually to get upset and lash out at others, whether it is their fault or not. We can also still be upset and angry, but just bite our tongues as we ‘grin and bear it.’ We can also laugh about the situation when we realize it is out of our control and just trust that God will see us through it. How do react when things don’t go your way, and does your reaction have an impact on others around you as well?
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4
When things don’t go well, its easy to get discouraged and start blaming others, God, or sometimes even ourselves for the problems we encounter. We can get stuck into thinking we are somehow cursed or stuck in a bad situation of our own or someone else’s doing, which may be true in some situations, but often they are just consequences of living in a broken world with broken and sinful people, including ourselves. So, if this is what we are to expect each day going forward, where is our hope? We can try to control each situation to make it work out how we want, which may help, but doesn’t work in every situation when we realize we can’t control everything. We can try to ignore things, which also seems to work for a time, but we eventually have to deal with the realities of live as well. We can put our hope in Christ and trust that He will give us the strength and knowledge we need each day and see us through our end till we are with Him in Glory. As a Christian, this may be the truth we all need to be reminded of to help deal with what each day has for us, and to rejoice regardless of what we encounter. May you find that joy each day as we move forward with into 2021!
I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. Romans 8:18
Yours in Christ,