We have been singing a song in our later services that has a bridge about how God brings good out of things that seem powerless. The lyrics say:
You turn mourning to dancing
You give beauty for ashes
You turn shame into glory
You’re the only one who can!
We are starting a Christmas series this week titled “Hope is Here,” and this week we’ll focus on HOPE when Plans Change. I was thinking about the times when I experienced problems or pains or changed plans and instead of disaster, I experienced blessing.
- A Christmas snowstorm that closed the highways and stranded an elderly couple at a convenience store gave birth to a friendship that has stretched over two decades.
- A no-show for a lunch appointment made me available for a rare and wonderful conversation with a person I had not seen in years.
- A problem with a real estate appraisal that would scuttle a closing became major savings on a home purchase.
- An angry conversation became a connection with people that changed my life.
- An injury and broken dream created a new dream that has affected the rest of my life.
Every day we are bombarded by circumstances that we describe as problems. But because of the Gospel, we have the opportunity to trade our anger for hope, and trust that God will be at work in those problems, and because we do, we have vision to see the opportunities that are often born from those problems.
Will you approach this Christmas season with that kind of hope? With that kind of openness? I am sure that this Christmas will have its challenges, but God has a knack for bringing blessings out of problems. . .if only we have eyes to see them!