Show of hands (or paws) - who has the life they always thought they'd have?
Recently I was with a group that talked about the devastating experiences they had in their lives. While they were not happy about what happened that derailed them from "their plan", they appreciated what God had done in their lives, despite the pain, the doubt, the anger, the bitterness. Restoration can be a wondrous thing.
Little Oliver Twist, the kitten in the plantar in the picture, was dumped off at my house about a year ago. While I doubt a six week old kitten has expectations of what its life may be like, being abandoned and cold wouldn't be the preference for any. However, Oliver ("Ollie") is now in a home where he is deeply loved. And it hasn't been just a happy tail/tale for him either. His owner had lost a spouse months before Ollie needed a home. Guess who is happy to have a loving, purring kitten by her side?
It makes no logical sense to be grateful for the thorns of life, but redemption for our pain is possible. It may be a bumpy ride to get through the emotions, to learn to trust an invisible God, but it's so worth it to find out an invisible concept is the Real Presence.
What are you grateful for in your life? Have things gone wrong for you lately? Sometimes it is hard to be thankful and God understands that. Refocusing our perspective is step one. It is why Jesus said, "Come to me" - indeed, He knows our thorns intimately.