It’s all in how you look at it…

My mind seems to always be yearning and churning. I was thinking about so many things this morning as I was driving Noah into town for school. The beautiful sunrise is a reminder of the grace that is sufficient for today and the new mercies that greet me every morning. As I took a sip of my nice warm coffee, I sighed and said to myself, “there is no way I will ever untangle all the troubles of the past” and then I felt the calm assurance that there is no need to even try. Yesterday and all of my yesterdays have slipped forever away and I am to look and press forward with hope and joyful expectation of the goodness the Lord always has for His own.

Teaching is fodder for thinking and pondering the issues of life, those that face us all as well as those that are unique to each life. Amazing how delivering those textbook lectures gives rise to examples of lived experiences that I choose to share with my class in hopes of inspiring them to think and choose wisely for the remainder of their days. How precious those students are to me! I look out into their young faces and my heart hopes for the good in life to be their’s.

Yesterday I had one of those cherished moments when one of my quieter students came back in to see me after everyone else had left the room just to say she really enjoys my class. As she left and I felt both the relief of having the work week behind me and the validation that what I do there is meaningful, I felt such overwhelming gratitude for the blessing of my job.

Every student won’t take to heart the life lessons I’ve learned the hard way and choose to go out on a limb to share, but some…some will, and for them I will always go the extra mile. I love the scripture that says, “come now, and let us reason together…” (Isaiah 1:18) I try to remember that when I teach.

I so often find myself wanting to slow down and wanting others to slow down as well. We get so busy and in such a hurry we often fail to appreciate and savor the blessings, the many gifts of the day. So many of us are so wrapped up in worry over our wants and thoughts of the future that we don’t even see the bounty that surrounds us now, and now is really all that we have. Tomorrow may not come for me or for you, but today is here and we are in it, so this is the time and place to fully engage.

On that drive to Noah’s school this morning, in the midst of my pondering, I saw two men walking. They were both quite disheveled in appearance and one was pushing a grocery cart likely filled with all or most of his earthly belongings. They appeared to be homeless. Such a perspective changer! They, too, have blessings for which to give thanks. Though cold and needy, they were able to move and walk freely. There are people offering help and places they can go for food this morning and shelters are available for the night.

My, my goodness, how blessed we all are who have homes and jobs and families, life, liberty, love and happiness. And as I write the many words to describe our blessings the greatest of all is GRACE. We are covered in grace, if only we will slow down, look up, and embrace. Even the pursuit of goodness is blessed, joyful, and hope-filled. May we fully commit to honoring the gift of life. Each moment is far too precious to waste or to squander.

Life story after life story after life story illuminates for us the journeys individuals have made out of bondage, out of poverty, out of hopelessness, out of despair and into the glorious grace and peace of God. Others walk ever deeper into the darkness and ugliness of the world and never reemerge to find the beauty that is offered to all. They fail to recognize that life is a gift and they were made for a good purpose.

One of the great deceptions is the belief that any person is insignificant. Made by God, created in His image for His divine purpose, each life is boundlessly significant! May I never fail to honor each one I meet with the reverence that naturally flows out of this knowledge.

“Come now, and let us reason together…”

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