I work in the front office of an elementary school. The clinic is located right behind my desk, so there’s a fairly steady stream of visitors most days. There’s rarely anything particularly noteworthy, just things like bumps, bruises, sore throats and stomach aches.
But, a week or so ago, a little boy in kindergarten, came in crying. He was yelling, “I throwed up on the playground!” But, he wasn’t sad; he was furious. After he screamed it the third time, I had to turn my head, so he wouldn’t see me chuckle. I mean this child was completely outraged that he had been sick on the playground.
How dare his body treat him in such a way! Our sweet nurse calmed him down in minutes. As soon as he took a breath, he was fine. He was given something to drink. His mama was called and he went home. The next time I saw him, he was completely back to normal.
That little kindergartner’s outrage stayed on my mind long after his clinic visit. I guess it was an outward manifestation of how adults feel when bad things happen to us.
As Christians, when we get bad news or a bad diagnosis, what’s our first impulse? How do we tend to react? Do we immediately go to God in prayer and ask for strength and courage? Do we acknowledge to Him that we know He’s at work in all of our circumstances, not just the good ones? Does knowing He’s in charge give us a sense of peace no matter what we are facing?
Or….do we tend to shake our fists in outrage when when tragedy strikes? Do we question God? Do we ask why? Do we decide we have been abandoned? Do we find ourselves completely indignant that our lives aren’t filled with sunny days and perfection?
Is our faith mature enough to trust in God’s plan for our lives or do we have that kindergarten faith where we believe if we always do our part, bad things will never happen?
The Bible tells us that, “Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character hope.” Romans 5:3-4
Rejoicing in suffering is a difficult concept to grasp. I must confess that I’m more likely to react like that kindergartner in the face of tragedy.
Grace, gently reminds me that I am called to a deeper trust and obedience. Experience has taught me that God is always with me and His ways and plans are better than my own.
A kindergartner reminded me. Perhaps you needed reminding too.
Have an awesome day!