“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.” (James 1:2-3 NIV)
Have you ever had one of those days? Well, I had one today. It all started when I had to screw a sheet of plywood back onto a wall. The sheet came off easily, but lining all the screw holes up to put it back on was more difficult. Still, with the help of my granddaughter, patiently handing me the screws, the task was finally completed. It had taken longer than I anticipated though, which meant we had to hurry if we were going to walk to town in time to meet a friend for tea.
Thus, the girls and I began snatching up caps, shoes and hoodies. Just as we were ready, one of them piped up that they wanted a snack. I grabbed two peanut butter cookies and hustled them out the door. Only to find a flat stroller tire. Grabbing the air compressor, I fixed the tire and popped the cookies into the stroller’s accordion style sun shade, telling the girls they could have them once the dogs were put away.
Hurrying down the driveway I hustled the dogs into my house. Only to discover as I ran back out that Frank, my gelding, and Marshall the goat, who were out grazing, had ambled over to be nosy. In the process they had pushed the sun shade open and were enjoying the girl’s cookies. They had also shed hair everywhere. To top it off both girls were wailing as they saw their snack devoured.
Shooing the livestock away, I ran into the house, grabbed a brush to rid the stroller of hair, as well as replacement new cookies. As I exited, Sunny dog, squeezed out and refused to go back in. Anxious to leave, I snapped on her leash and bolted for the gate.
Unfortunately, by this time I felt harried and grumpy. For just as Frank and Marshall had gobbled the girl’s cookies, all these little frustrations and trials of the morning had effectively eaten up my joy. As I was grousing to myself the thought occurred to me that surely there had to be a spiritual lesson in this morning’s events. And there was, for I recalled my dad’s oft repeated words: Remember that the only thing you really ever have any control over is your attitude.
And how true it is. For none of us knows what large or small frustrations or trials, we will encounter each day. But we can know that they will develop godliness in us if we let them. For God is able to use all of our experiences to grow us to become more Christ-like in attitude, word and deed as we trust that He is in control and helping us each step of the way.
Truths that allow us to enjoy a good and thankful attitude when the events of the day are doing their best to gobble up our cookies of joy. Cookies that I took back, once my feelings of frustration were put into perspective. God’s perspective.
So today, which attitude will you choose, in regards to frustrations or trials, big or small? A Godly one, which blesses us with cookies of joy, such as faith, patience and perseverance? Or a human one that gobbles them up?
Prayer: Father God, thank You that we can consider it pure joy when the frustrations and trials of life assault us. For we have the power to choose how to view them. In a humanly way or in a Godly fashion. May we each select the Godly perspective that we might partake of the spiritual cookies that await us when we do. In Jesus’ name we ask. Amen.