The above title is a tidbit from Selena Gomez’s song “Birthday” (which I can’t get enough of even when it’s not my birthday), however, I’ll confess that the night prior my 22nd did not make me feel “fine and free” at all.
I attended Wednesday night service at church for the first time in months. If anything I was excited and looking forward to what the lesson would be until the topic was on pain, suffering, worry, and anxiety. What a great pre- celebration subject! I suddenly began to feel very uneasy, mentally listing everything that I have to do, write, and sew. Then it hit me that I was turning 22 in just a few hours and I felt so old and unaccomplished. Ewww, right? The night ultimately ended in tears. Who knows why God allows that to happen in His own house but His reasoning is perfect.
I sought out encouragement from my parents and my mom said, “Even though you’re working, laugh more. Smile more. Dance. You are blessed to have another year.” And I knew I was. A few hours into my shift with the trickle effect of co-workers’ greetings, I was surprised at work by my manager and a friend from church with cupcakes, gift cards, balloons, flowers, and other goodies. Not to mention the plethora of social media greetings received. Blessed indeed.
I now feel more than fine and free not because of presents, but because of great friendships and knowing that God allows pain to remind us of His goodness. He doesn’t mean to slam us with distress, heartache, and sadness without us reaping anything from it. When we hurt, He hurts. He wants to see us overcome our challenges with a happy heart and righteous motives. In the end, it’s all a part of His plan for us to seek and become closer to Him. What could be better?
Friend, if you are going through pain, worry, and anything in between, it’s for a reason- a higher reason. Gain a positive outlook and look to Christ because He’s been looking at you the entire time with open arms.
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“Our sense of joy, satisfaction, and fulfillment in life increases, no matter what the circumstances, if we are in the center of God’s will.” – Billy Graham