The weeks before our daughter's wedding seemed to be going by rather smoothly - almost TOO smoothly. One could easily say we were overdue for something bad to happen in our lives but I don't believe in all of that karma stuff. And I don't do "luck" either. However, this past week my wife and I endured so many frustrating events in our lives one could easily say we were . . . jinxed.
It all was started when our relatively new high-tech oven failed. The cook top still worked but the oven simply would not get any warmer than 200 degrees. My wife had a lot of baking to do, getting ready for our daughter's wedding. And now that was impossible. Strangely enough, that's when the drain for the kitchen sink got clogged. So much for doing dishes (oh darn).
Naturally I decided to unclog the drain by myself. Why pay for a plumber, right? So I got a wrench and a bucket and headed down to the basement to open the clean out for the kitchen sink. All was proceeding as normal. I began unscrewing the cap on the clean out. The pipe began to drip as expected. Soon there was a trickle. It still wasn't draining fast enough for me. Maybe just another quarter turn . . . .
My arm, the basement wall, several storage boxes and the carpeting were all suddenly soaking wet with dirty, grey sewer water. Nice. Smelled nice too. :O
Then I almost ran out of gas coming home the day before. My car notifies me when I get to within 50 miles of having no gas. It does it again at 25 miles. I'm not sure how I missed BOTH of those warnings but I did. When I finally noticed I was running low on gas, I got off the freeway at the next available exit with a gas station. The gas gage read - "2 miles to empty."
Why were all these bad things happening? Was Satan trying to get us to be angry or frustrated? Maybe. Were we being tested in some way? Perhaps. There was a lot of things that could have really ruined one of the most special weeks of our lives. So why didn't it? The answer, I believe, is God.
Really? How can God make us not care when bad things happen to us . . . when frustration mounts and it seems like nothing is going our way? Like we're jinxed or cursed.
I think it's because we have a faith that makes none of this earthly stuff matter. It is because our focus is on things above not the here below. It all depends on our point of view.
Scroll down through the posts on Facebook sometime. You will see dozens of posts by people who have an earthly view of things, not an eternal view. This morning's sampling was pretty typical. There was a movie quote about having sex. Another about how it's too cold outside. One about how someone doesn't like Thanksgiving. ANOTHER one about the temperature. Here's one. Someone is thinking about starting a blog! Ha!
Most of the posts I read are self-focused. Most of our troubles in this life are self-focused. What if we looked at everything with an eye towards heaven? What is we focus on the eternal aspect of everything that happens instead of the temporal?
Suddenly everything "here" becomes less important.
When our oven failed my wife called her best friend and asked to use HER oven. Cookies got baked and a friend came to the rescue, increasing the bond between my wife and her friend. When the drain clogged up the week before our daughter's wedding we were grateful it didn't happen when our house was filled with guests. When I almost ran out of gas I learned a lesson about planning ahead. It all depends on how we look at things.
When Job was confronted with all the things that went wrong in his life, what did HE do? He praised God. He worshipped. Perhaps we should try harder to find ways to do that. Maybe then things wouldn't seem so bad after all.
"20 Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped. 21 And he said, “Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked shall I return. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.” - Job 1:20-21
Blessed Be The Name by Matt Redman