When upon life’s billows you are tempest-tossed, When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost, Count your many blessings, name them one by one, And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.” — Count Your Blessings by Johnson Oatman, Jr. 1897
Like most, I have much to be thankful for. And like most, I fail to see it half of the time. Too busy nursing my wounded feelings or catering to sudden stress overload, not bothering to stop, breathe and actually look at what all God has done for me. Which has been so much. God has blessed me tremendously, not just in this year but throughout my entire life. It wasn’t until recently, however, that I took off the blinders and actually took stock of all that our wonderful amazing Father has done for me in my 30 years of life.
Yesterday, I came upon an email that made my heart sink. My husband and I share an account and see everything each other sends or receives but for a brief moment I felt like he had left me out in the dark before making a big decision. I even admit, I cried a little. Without talking it over with me he had replied to a possible job position that would require him to go to Florida and work 5 days a week. Leaving Saturday and Sunday for us, but not really. We have so much going on with the ministry and church that weekends are usually pretty booked. Whats more that I couldn’t understand is that he is leaving a good paying job to devote more time to God and the ministry, which I fully support. God is first before anything and anyone else, myself included. So it didn’t make sense, essentially he would be going from one full-time job to another full-time job… in another state away.
As I looked at the email summary in our inbox and fought back tears a multitude of questions and complaints began to bombard me.
“He didn’t even talk to me about it.”
“How is that making more time for God?”
“He doesn’t want to do one type of job because of how far it would take him from home yet he’s willing to take this one?”
“Did he even pray about it!?” (A stupid question as I know he prays about everything.)
So, amid the conflict whether great or small, Do not be discouraged, God is over all;…”
Honestly, though, my feelings had just been hurt. Not even because he didn’t talk it over with me because I know he wouldn’t do anything outside of what God told him to do. There was a possibility of him leaving home for 5 days out of the week, 6 if you count his needing to head back sometime Sunday evening. The idea that I would only get 1 and half a day with him for who knows how long saddened me. Sure, we’ve been apart for longer, before we got married, but that doesn’t mean I want to repeat it. Pushing the doubts and dark questions aside I took a deep breath and simply asked God, “we don’t need the money that bad do we?”
Anyone with kids or who are expecting as I am (I’m nearing 7 months in our pregnancy now) would snort at that question, especially seeing as we just moved into a new home. Of course, you need money! But money isn’t everything and I know that God will provide for us. So maybe this was His providing? After a final deep exhale of breath I pushed away from the counter and gave it to God. “It’s not about what I want, but what You want. So if this is Your will, let it happen for him and help me to be supportive and understanding.
Later on, as we were driving back from my parents the song Count Your Blessings by Johnson Oatman, Jr. played through my head. Followed by a personal favorite, Thank You, Lord, for Your Blessings on Me by The Happy Goodmans. As I hummed the last one to myself Mathew asked me what I had said. “Nothing,” I answered with a smile. Too busy thanking God for his many blessings in not just my life but our life. So today, I am counting my blessings and naming them one by one. I encourage you to do the same. Things aren’t ever as bad as they seem when you stop giving in to self and focus on God and all that He’s done for you.
♥† Jessica Quinn
And I will make them and the places round about my hill a blessing; and I will cause the shower to come down in his season; there shall be showers of blessing.” Ezekiel 34:26 (KJV)