It caught me off guard. I was on my way to school. Jamming to some rap. Feeling pretty good. When all of a sudden, a warning came across my dashboard: “Warning, engine overheated.”
I glanced at the temperature gauge, only to find the dial resting on red. Needless to say, I was freaking out. I stopped my engine as soon as I could. Hello, State Route 733. The outskirts of Pomeroy.
My Meigs County readers know two things about 733: there’s nowhere to pull off, and the cell phone service is terrible.
After letting my engine cool for a couple of minutes, I made it to Taz’s gas station. I finally reached my dad on the phone. He said, “Pop the hood. Check the antifreeze.”
There’s a popular quote that simply reads, “See the good.” Makes sense. The world is a messy place. Negativity runs rampant. It’s a good self-help tip. See the good.
But what’s good? That’s kinda relative. For me, it’s black coffee, worship tunes, and a book. Those things make me happy. I’m sure there’s good in your life. I don’t know what it is, but I challenge you to see it. Be thankful for the little blessings.
When I communicate, I try to be practical. There are certainly benefits to positive thinking. Don’t forsake seeing the good in your ordinary world. Little things can make a big difference. But I want to focus this popular quote through the lens of God’s Word.
The Israelites were in Babylonian captivity, and the prophet wrote, “Thus says the LORD, who makes a way in the sea, a path in the mighty waters, who brings forth chariot and horse, army and warrior; they lie down, they cannot rise, they are extinguished, quenched like a wick: ‘Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert’” (Isa. 43:16-19 ESV).
Let me put this in my own words.
The voice comes from a burning bush—well, it isn’t really burning. But it’s on fire.
“Then the LORD said, ‘I have surely seen the affliction of my people who are in Egypt and have heard their cry because of their taskmasters. I know their sufferings, and I have come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land to a good and broad land, a land flowing with milk and honey, to the place of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites’” (Ex. 3:7-8 ESV).
The Israelites have been under Egyptian bondage for nearly 400 years. But God, seeing the hurt of His people, decides to come down for them.
I’m learning to enjoy my life. It sounds crazy, but there are times when it doesn’t come naturally. The same is probably true for you.
How do you enjoy your life when your life isn’t ideal? It’s hard to be happy when it’s natural to be sad. It’s hard to smile when it’s natural to cry. And it’s difficult to enjoy your life when circumstances weigh you down. Nonetheless, I believe it’s possible.
I’m sitting on a bench. The sky is dark. The breeze is cool. It’s a beautiful evening here at Ohio Christian University. I’m enjoying this moment. It sounds contradicting. My transition to college has not been easy. Some of my circumstances are not what I prefer. But I’m learning to enjoy my life. More specifically, I’m learning how to be happy in this season.