A few months ago, I had purchased a little basket and put some plastic Easter eggs in it. When my three year old grandson would come over around Easter-time, I’d hide them for him. I never got around to putting them away and so when he was over a week or two ago, he decided he was going to do the hiding. Just as he finished up hiding the eggs, they had to go so we never hunted those eggs.
Now, as I go about my day, I will sometimes find one of those eggs. The other day, I was going for the vacuum and opened the closet door. There, right at my feet was an sparkly yellow egg. It just made me smile. I put it in the basket. I know I will find a few more over the coming weeks. And maybe months or years. Sometimes three year olds can hide things very well!
When I picked up that egg from the closet floor, I was reminded of how the Lord walks with us through trials and hard times.
As we walk a rough, rocky path, God doesn’t generally tend to remove us from that path. But, every now and again–and often just when we need it–He provides a little thing to make it bearable. A Bible verse we just “happen” to read that day, an encouraging phone call or text from a friend, a video or speaker that speaks right to our need that day.
Sometimes we can be so desperate for relief from our trial that we miss the provision of the little things in the midst of the journey.
Have you ever been through a storm and then, when you come out the other side, reflect on of the small ways in which God provided for and encouraged you? Little things that showed clearly that He cares for you personally?
You see, we don’t serve an impersonal God. We serve the Lord God of the Universe who loves us with an everlasting love. We follow a God who truly cares for us as we walk in this sinful world and endure the suffering that naturally comes along with it.
I think all of us can tend towards the selfish belief that if God loved us, then He would rescue us from pain and sorrow. In fact, some of the false Christianity today gets followers by promising relief from trials if the person does just the right thing (speaks the right phrases, prays the right way, gives money to the right ministry, etc.)
But, while relief is truly wonderful, God’s purposes and plans often go far beyond instantaneous relief for His children. They include His glory and our growth. They include the salvation of the lost. And I believe that sometimes include the spiritual growth of others, as well.
But, while we suffer, we are not left bereft and alone. God, in His great kindness and mercy, provides little mercies and small graces. These make the trial bearable and remind us of His loving care.
Just like a little egg on a closet floor reminds me of the grandson who brings me so much joy, so do the little blessings during a fierce storm remind us of God’s love and the joy and peace He has promised.
Don’t miss the little blessings even in the midst of the trial. They are there, if we only pay attention.
Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and our God and Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting consolation and good hope by grace, 17 comfort your hearts and [i]establish you in every good word and work. 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17
casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you. I Peter 5:7