Finding the Blessings

Hi, Friends! I hope you are all well.

I want to start off by sharing a wonderful poem written by Daryl Madden. Last week, you might recall that I shared a personal prayer with you. But when typing it out, it seemed the enemy was attacking. So I mentioned how real the spiritual world is. Daryl has such a way with words, and crafted an amazing poem from that thought. Check out Daryl’s poem here!

I also want to share a video about the late Dr. Charles Stanley and his life. It is very inspiring. But make sure you have time on your hands first, as the video is an hour long. You can access the video here.

Now onto my post for today. A couple of weeks ago I talked a bit about what I learned during Lent. Something I didn’t mention was that while I was offline during Lent, we had a death in the family. My Uncle Alan left this world. And since his birthday was this week, I wanted to share a little something about him today.

When we first hear about someone passing, there is shock, grief, heartbreak, and devastation. This was a heavy time for us.

Also, when we hear about a death, this might make us wonder about the afterlife. Was the person ready? Will we be ready when our time comes? So I don’t want to miss an opportunity to say, if you or someone you know isn’t ready, perhaps these links will help: Accepting Jesus and An Eternal Mindset. If we are Christians, we can look forward to seeing our saved loved ones again. What a joy that will be!

In addition to that, I could say a lot about my uncle. I could talk about his sense of humor. I could mention that he drove out of his way to pick me up from college on Friday nights so that I could spend the weekend with family. I could talk about his life and how much he loved his family. But today I want to touch on something I learned as my family and I traveled for the service.

When I look back at the time surrounding the service for my uncle, I can see many things to be thankful for. Even in the midst of sorrow, we can find blessings. Perhaps that is why 1 Thessalonians 5:18 (NKJV) says, “In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”

Many of us had to travel in order to attend the funeral. For my friends who do not live in the US, see the map below. I have New York circled in red, North Carolina circled in purple, and Florida circled in blue. Please excuse my sloppy lines 🙂

The funeral was in North Carolina. My parents live in New York and I live in Florida. However, it just so happened that my parents were in Florida at the time, so we were able to travel together. That was a blessing.

Shared meals, lots of conversation along the way, good laughs. All blessings in the midst of the sorrow.

My sister and brother-in-law live in Pennsylvania (circled in green on the map), and they traveled for the service as well. I had not seen them in nearly three years. And my parents hadn’t seen them for many months either. It was a blessing to spend a little time together.

My cousin and his family didn’t have to travel, but we rarely get to see them. So visiting with them was a blessing as well.

On the drive there, we were in terrible traffic thanks to two bad accidents. It took longer than we would have liked. But the important part is that we got there safely. A blessing.

When we arrived in town late at night, in the rain, it was stressful finding our way. Thankfully we were able to figure out where we needed to go … after a u-turn or two. But still a blessing.

We all went out to dinner one night. And afterwards we gathered to talk for a bit. Blessings.

Sharing memories and stories about my uncle. Blessings.

Texting family and friends along the way. Knowing you have people praying for you and your family. Blessings.

Extra hours to read good books, a cup of coffee when it’s needed, cool weather. All blessings.

Traffic on the way home was better than the traffic on the way there. A blessing.

I am not making light of this sad event. But I did want to point out that no matter what we are going through, we can still look around for blessings. Yes there were things we could have complained about during this trip as well. But we have a choice. Will we look for the good? Or will we look for the not-so-good?

There are silver linings around those dark clouds. There is still goodness in this world.

I’m reminded of one of my favorite songs – Alive and Breathing by Matt Maher. As long as we are on this earth, we can find something to praise God for. We have the Good News of Jesus to share with others. And there is joy to be found in the world around us.

Our hearts can find beauty, even in the difficult times. And perhaps when we are facing something hard, that is the most important time for us to look around for beauty and for the goodness of God.

Thank you for stopping by and reading my musings. I hope you found a bit of encouragement.

One more thing. I want to start a new routine of making a fresh prayer list at the beginning of each month. I know many people already do something similar with their prayer journals. This will ensure I am praying for current concerns and it will lead to leaning on the Good Shepherd for all of our needs. So please let me know how I can pray for you in the coming weeks.

Thank you and have a blessed weekend.

© 2018-2023 Bridget A. Thomas

19 Comments on “Finding the Blessings

  1. I can choose to focus on all the bad or I can choose to see all the good in my life. I’m thankful for this post and the reminder that every day is wrapped in blessings. It sounds like y’all had a wonderful time celebrating the life of your uncle. I’m glad for that, too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Rainer! We did have a nice celebration of his life… and I absolutely agree. We have a choice each day. It can be so easy to focus on the negative. But we don’t have to. God is always there. He blesses us so much. I fear we miss many of His blessings because our eyes are not focused on the good. Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing your thoughts! 🤗

      Liked by 1 person

  2. So true Bridget, even in a tough times we can look for things to see God’s hand at work. Hard to do but it helps. So sorry for your loss. He sounds like a lovely man. Hugs to you as you grieve his loss.
    Take care my friend 💙💐

    Liked by 1 person

    • Very well said! And that reminds me of something I read in a Laurel Hawkes book 😁 I will be praying for you as you work on your book. I completely understand the roadblocks. I started a book in 2020 that I have yet to finish. But God is good and He will see you through!! 🙌🤍🙏 Thank you for sharing that with me!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi! I love this part, “Shared meals, lots of conversation along the way, good laughs. All blessings in the midst of the sorrow.” So true! Jesus comes to us in our sadness and griefs. Thank you for your sharings. I love them! God bless.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Bridget. I’m sorry to hear about your uncle. That was so nice of him to pick you up on the weekends while you were in college. That’s a wonderful memory. I am glad that in the midst of the sorrow, you could still see God’s many blessings. You’re right, there is always something to be thankful for. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m sorry about your uncle, thankful though that you were able to enjoy the company of family while reflecting on his life. What a bittersweet blessing.❤️

    I could use prayer that I would be able to discern when the enemy hurls lies…so firmly rejecting his lies and instead focusing on God’s peace and truth.

    Liked by 1 person

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