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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Put on a happy face

"Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus." I Thessalonians 5:16-18.

Do you rejoice always, in all things, in all circumstances? Yeah, me either! I mean I know I should. It's what we are instructed to do. But sometimes, I'm just not happy with my situation. However, I was lead to these verses a couple of days ago and they have continued to ring in my mind. First, let me take you back about 2 weeks. On Saturday, Aug 13th, my mom came to live with us, not permanently, but still without any notice. For several days, she had been having a lot of pain in her left knee. So on my way home from the gym, I called to check on her. No answer. I tried her cell. She was in tears, telling me she was on her way to our house. She'd been to the ER, she had her clothes and she was going to stay with us for awhile. WHAT!!! Ok, it's only for a couple of days (or so we thought). Little did we know, she no longer has any cartilage in that knee and needs a total knee replacement. So she has been in a lot of pain; and we have had to rearrange our home, schedules and lives to accommodate her present needs.

Now, I come from a family (as does my husband) that strongly believes in caring for your parents as they age. Inconvenience aside, we both knew it was the right thing to do. And although better than I used to be, I'm still not very good at "rolling with the punches". I am a planner. I need warning and time to prepare before changes can be made in my life. But apparently, God had forgotten about that little quirk, because 10 minutes later she was in our living room, leg propped up in a recliner (no, not my husband's). Did I mention, she had to bring her big, slobbery Boxer too. (sigh)

So if you can't tell, I've been stressed out!!! I really felt like I needed to go in a closet or up to a mountain top so God and I could have a chat. But between caring for 2 kids, my mom, 2 dogs and a husband,  there has barely been time for a shower. So while enjoying a few quiet moments, I felt God lead me to read I Thessalonians 5:17. I read the 2 short words, "pray continually," and decided to read the surrounding verses. "Rejoice always. Give thanks in all circumstances." Immediately, I knew that God was speaking to me about my attitude and the stress I'd been feeling. I LOVE  how God meets you right where you are, with the perfect words you need to hear. He knew my quirks. He knew I'd be stressed. He knew how overwhelmed I'd be. He knew HE had it all under control. And He knew what verse to use to speak to me, familiar verses revealed in a new light. I can't control what God allows to bring into my life. But I can control my attitude. He says "rejoice, pray and give thanks." They aren't suggestions. They are commands!  And although it may be difficult at times, it's what I will strive to do.

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