Yesterday, we took John and the grandkids to Sunset Falls. The day didn’t start out promising, let me tell you. It was overcast, but the weatherman had said the clouds would burn off by noon (they didn’t), I was in a tremendous amount of pain, enough to make me sick at my stomach, and what could have been a 45 minute drive turned into and hour and a half because we went the wrong way more than once.
I’ll admit, to my shame, that on the drive to the falls, I was feeling sorry for myself and wondering how on earth I was going to get through this day and when, oh when God, were You going to just heal me? I continued in this line of thought for a lot longer than I would care to admit. Once we arrived at the falls, we got busy staking out our spot and unloading the van. The kids headed immediately to the falls which was down a somewhat steep embankment, I followed and promised myself that I would only walk up this embankment one more time – when we were leaving.
At one point, I had had enough of me and my whining and I went to the picnic table and laid my head down on it and begged God to help me get through this day. I remembered the verse from the devotion I posted the day before where God says He will quicken us according to His word so I began thinking of verses to quicken me. I could only think of a few, my brain was so clouded with me, me, me. But then I looked up at the tall trees all around me and noticed that I heard the creek and the birds and not traffic and I began to start thanking God for these things. I looked around and found more things to be grateful for – time with 3 of our 4 grandchildren, time with our son and time with my husband. I was grateful that it was overcast because we had the place to ourselves. My list grew longer and as it did, my attitude changed and then I noticed that my pain level changed also. I walked back down the falls energized and spent the rest of the day exploring with the kids and gathering fire wood and watching as the kids and Bruce built a large rock sculpture.
We helped the kids build a fire to warm up with after their swim and enjoyed the heat it provided for us all.
Before the day was over, I had walked up and down that embankment at least a dozen times. All of these things were done pain free. When I decided to enter into the present moment and quit focusing on me, my pain level decreased drastically and my enjoyment of the day radically increased. Nothing else had changed except my attitude. I ended up having an incredibly wonderful (albeit exhausting) day with my family and the gifts of nature at Sunset Falls.
I hope I remember that the difference between a bad day and a great day could just be my attitude. Are you having a difficult day? A difficult stretch of days? Could I encourage you to find a quiet spot and pour out your heart to God and then look for one thing to be grateful for? Maybe it won’t turn your day around like it did mine, but what if it did?
God of Wonder beyond our comprehension, how amazing are Your ways. When my day seems doomed, You are there, waiting, ever-patient and ever-loving to hear my cries and touch my heart. How I need You. Every minute, every hour, I need You. Thank you for Sunset Falls, and family and the clouds that covered our day and the fire that warmed us. Thank You that Your thoughts are not my thoughts, thank You. Amen.
- Is it Possible to Have Blessing in Pain? (chronicillnesspaindevotionals.wordpress.com)