Counting Some Blessings…

Frequently I find myself viewing God as a serious, “it might hurt but it’s good for you” kind of guy. That is certainly one aspect of his personality. He is a Father who loves enough to discipline, who has called us to a life of service and selfless love, who asks us to sacrifice everything for the greater good that is the salvation of our souls.

But sometimes God reminds me that he also delights in giving us good things. While he values our sanctification above our temporal happiness, He takes pleasure in giving us good gifts. Our recent trip to California certainly qualifies as a wonderful gift.

We had entertained vague notions of spending a week or so reconnecting with friends in Silicon Valley, bringing supporters up to date, and maybe squeezing in a bit of much-needed R&R in the green California springtime. Apparently, God thought this was a good idea. When we were offered a pair of “buddy passes” on Alaska Airlines (enabling us to fly stand-by for a substantial discount), we quickly accepted, and scheduled the trip.

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Staying Flexible

Sometimes all the best-laid plans don’t work out. I’d flown from Colorado to Washington to spend a few days visiting a good friend I’ve known since we were roommates in college. We’d hoped to go for walks in the woods, strolls on the beach, photo safaris to some local scenic hotspots. Instead, as I write this, I’m lying on her couch with a 100-degree fever, a stuffy nose and a throbbing headache.

I’d feel even worse if I thought I’d given my germs to her family, but it’s pretty obvious the sharing went in the other direction. I’d hoped to avoid the flu that her husband and kids were down with, but all the hand-washing and tea-drinking were to no avail. I got sick anyway.

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