Do you remember reading about Alexander when you were a child? You know, the boy who had the "terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day?" That was my day today. (I know, I know...you thought that was that other post!) Disappointments, heartbreaks, and mishaps of all kinds dominated the course of our family's "day off" for the 4th. Though we had set out to have the most adventurous, exciting of days, unexpected difficulties outside of our little family circle stood as reoccurring roadblocks to our plans.
Halfway through the day, in effort to boost morale, our family of six decided to catch the train to the next city for a little outing. It was almost laughable when we found ourselves running to the platform with strollers and picnic in hand, just to see the train pull away from the station. It was on time, we were not. The sun unsympathetically beat down on the six of us, adding insult to injury, and this mama was nearly in tears. All four boys walked quietly back to the car, everyone thinking the same thing, but unwilling to say it aloud.
Once in the car, a few sniffles could be heard from the back seat as we decided to take a drive.
"Let's go around, and everyone can share how they are feeling," I offered (trying not to sound like a support group, though I desperately needed encouragement myself!)
"I'm so sad! Nothing has worked out today," Number 1 admitted, after much coaxing.
"I wan after the twain, and it weft me," Number 3 cried, bewildered.
I knew the boys were sensing the weight of the stress that our family had experienced this day, and the disappointment was not merely about the train. It never is, is it?
Then, Number 1 asked out loud what we all were thinking inside:
"You know that verse that says that 'All things work together for good to those love God, and are called according to his purpose'? How is it good when we miss the train, and everything goes wrong?"
What a great question.
We spent the next half hour talking about how we know that God is sovereign, and is working all things out for our good; how missing the train can ultimately be for our good...how this very conversation we were having was good.
A light came on for Number 2: "So that means, even when we miss the train, we can glorify God!"
What a great answer.
We finished out the drive with a lively round of naming our blessings and Sonic slushes. Strawberry limeade is oh so good.
Our day continued with other mishaps and whatnots, but finished out with thankfulness and rest. None of our expectations were met, but we ultimately had a good day. Our day was good because God is good, and he's at work in us. He's what makes it good. And while sometimes we can clearly see and believe that the Lord is working good through our struggles and disappointments, more often than not we believe, and then see. And, that too, is good.