Tuesday, February 14, 2012

God is Good

It's easy to talk about God's goodness when things are going great. Sometimes people (read: I) can be critical of people exclaiming "God is good!" over something that seems trivial, like a beautiful, sunny day or travel plans working out when in actuality the truth is that God is good on a sunny day and God is still good on a dark, stormy day. But what those cynics (read: I) miss when criticizing is the importance of simply recognizing that God is good. Giving God credit for good things, even if he might not actually have opened up that parking spot for me, can't be bad way to keep my ego in check, a way of remembering that there is something, someone, bigger than me, more in control than I am, who, yes, made the day sunny and, yes, gave me five senses to enjoy it. (Who doesn't enjoy an ice-cold fudgesicle on a sunny day, thus covering the fifth sense.)

So that's enough shallow theology to last this blog the rest of the year, but what's my point? My point is this: I just got back from the most wonderful trip to the United States visiting my family, friends, and supporting churches, and the best way I can think of to sum it all up is with one, simple phrase: God is good.

When I moved to Natal in 2007, I had no idea when I would be able to go back to the States for a visit. I'm cheap and tickets aren't. So imagine my surprise when, in the last 4.5 years only one of my five trips to the States has been planned long ahead of time. Some trips were a gift, some were to fundraise, one was an official, planned furlough, and this last one was a dream come true.

As I've reflected on the trip in the days since I got home, I am overwhelmed with gratitude. Grateful that I got to go, grateful that the tickets weren't very expensive, grateful for who I got to see, grateful for the conversations I was blessed to be a part of, grateful for the time I got to spend with my aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandpa, and, of course, grateful for priceless moments with my immediate family. And most of all, grateful that I got to share all of that with a very important person who loved every minute just as much as I did.

Disclaimer: This is the first and will be the only mention of any such person on this blog. But as my logic goes, if you read this you either met him or saw the pictures of him, so this should not come as a shock to anyone who knows me personally! 

Our memories and camera memory cards are full of puzzles, chips & salsa,  miles and miles and miles of Oklahoma, Arkansas, Texas, and New England highways, hugs, rounds of Mexican Train & Pit, cream cheese, cheddar cheese, museums, Braum's ice cream, clay pigeons, hours of shared meals with friends, and bookstores.

I am grateful that God allowed for all of the pieces to fall into place to make this trip happen, and grateful for the love and support we received both here in Natal and in the US that made the trip so enjoyable.

God is good!

Disclaimer pt. 2: If you are a little nauseated by the mushiness of this post, very uncharacteristic of the usual writing on Living and Loving, just chalk it up to today being February 14 and rest assured that the next entry should have all the forwardness and self-deprecation you've grown accustomed to around here! Happy Valentine's Day!

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