I really like that quote from Anita Renfroe. She has it on a t-shirt for sale in her online store. It’s twenty bucks so I’m not buying it, but I’d like to. The Bible tells us that in this life we will have trouble. It’s right there in black and white.
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may
have peace. In this world you will have trouble…” (John 16:33)
God was quite honest about the whole thing, and yet when trouble comes our way, often we behave as if we had no idea it would ever come. And in fact, we are often pretty offended when it does.
Ever find yourself running late for work only to walk out to your car and find a flat tire? How about that on the hottest day of the summer, the air conditioner in your house goes kaput?
There are literally a million things that can veer off course in just a single day of our lives. If we ever make it through even one day without one of these things going “wrong” we should realize what a miracle that is. I’m trying to think if I have ever had a day where every single thing I wanted to happen did happen in just the way I wanted it to… I’m pretty sure that’s a no.
Even little things that go awry can frustrate. There is a book out that I have never actually read called,
Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff. The subtitle is, “And It’s All Small Stuff”. While I’ve not read it cover to cover, I did peruse it once while killing some time in Barnes and Noble, and found its principles a bit interesting.
It’s sort of a self-help book on attitudes. The only problem I had with the book is what the author did not say. He talked a lot about peace and tranquility, but I didn’t find where he shared how to get the peace that lasts. For that reason, I left it on the shelf and moved on to skim other books I had no intention of buying.
All the relaxation, breathing techniques, and attitude adjustments in the world won’t give us the lasting peace that only comes from the Holy Spirit. It’s the peace that the Bible tells us surpasses all human understanding. It’s the peace that holds strong during the large storms of life as well as when we have to write that big check to the air conditioner repairman.
And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension,
will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:7)
Difficulty is inevitable. Eventually the cat is going to puke in your shoe. It’s our response that is completely up to us. It takes quite a bit of practice not to over dramatize our situations or our responses to them. For lots of us, drama is our go-to reaction. Yet when we walk in the knowledge that no matter our circumstances, God is in control, we are better able to take in stride those unexpected detours in life, and keep the drama to a minimum.