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Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Counting My Blessings

Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional. – M. Kathleen Casey
Last week was thanksgiving season, it’s a joyous season in the United States and Canada; but for me I had time to reflect upon loved ones, blessings, the favour of God, and the undeserved mercies that had been granted on to me.
Unfortunately, sometimes I do take for granted and don’t show gratitude or count the blessings the way I should. Too often, I get in a mindset of doing the opposite. I end up focusing on the curses instead of the blessings. 
Just last week as I was sitting in the waiting room at the clinic, I find myself focusing on what’s wrong in my life, instead of what’s going right. As a result, I start a downward spiral of negativity, strife, and turmoil in my life. Every consultation I was referred from doctor to another, each time they requested for different examinations. Finally it was Saturday,wet and gloomy, I didn't expect to be sent to the Emergency Department, as I look out the window holding back my tears I told myself that there’s a silver lining in every situation.

The reality is God hasn’t promised us that everyday would be sunshine. Instead, He chose to mix it up with a little rain. It’s the rain that causes us to appreciate the sunshine. Our sorrows cause us to appreciate the joyous times. It’s the hurt and pain that causes us to appreciate the pleasures of life.
In a week alone, I had 5 blood samples taken and 2 drips insertion, considering that I had a blood test was 5 years ago, this was a bit of a shock. I did not enjoyed the needles; my arm became so sore following with bruises. Every normal result was actually a relief but does that mean, I have to go for further testing to find out the cause of the pain? And would the next test be more painful? When will it be the final test? What happens when the result come back abnormal? It was no fun waiting to get tested (for hours) or even waiting for the results (for days). I was nervous but yet I had to perform my daily routine, acting normal in front of everyone to avoid attention. Emotionally and mentally I knew that I would not want/able to answer any questions. Lucky enough, work kept me busy; I was so tired, got home late and all I wanted to do is climb into bed to rest.
During my free time, I thought a little retail therapy would help me clear my mind; I started online shopping for Christmas presents. Year after year I notice there is no easy gift that I can buy for people. Is there such thing as the "Perfect Gift"? 
Speaking of appreciation, have you ever given someone a gift, and after opening the gift, they showed a lack of gratitude for the gift? Maybe it was something they couldn’t appreciate. Maybe it was a gift that they couldn’t use. And instead of showing gratitude and thanksgiving, they complained. They seemed to miss the whole point giving.
Well in the same way, when I go around with my head down and focused on all the negativity in life, I’m indirectly saying to God, the ultimate gift giver “Thanks, but no thanks.” 
James 1:17 “Every good and perfect gift, comes from above.”
A good thing to remember is that everything works out for greater good. Even if your enemies attack in a bad way, God can work it out for your good.
The bible says God wouldn't put more on me than I can bear. Every bad storm, every heartache, every disappointment will eventually work out for my own good. Even the seemingly small and insignificant blessings are specially tailor-made for me. 
I pray as I visit the doctor again tomorrow, it would be for the final time and she will deliver some good news because a friend once told me ...

Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass, 
it is about learning to dance in the rain,
and to see the rainbow you must first endure some rain.

Here’s sharing on How I count my Blessings (even during difficult moments)
Make a choice to focus on every good and perfect thing in any and every situation. Start by count the blessings, not the curses. The good news is that in the end, I’ll look back and realize that even the curses were blessings in disguise.
Take a sheet of paper and draw a vertical line down the middle. On the right column, list all the things that are blessings. And on the left column, list all the things that seem to be a curse. I was amazed at how the blessings outweigh the curses.
I know it sounds cliché, but things can always be worse. But be encouraged and make a habit of counting blessings. 
Matthew 6:34 “Therefore do not worry about tomorrowfor tomorrow will worry about itself. 
Each day has enough trouble of its own”.
Tonight I experience an overflow of joy and peace as I charge forth on my journey of life tomorrow just like how I change my mindset around (after a week of painful experience) and embrace my blessings again.