I’m going to go out on a limb here, and assume a lot of you are like me. You fail to see all the blessings in your life. Okay, the ones we perceive as negatives, anyway. Do you find it hard to be grateful for the “negative” things that happen to you? I sure do. At least at first, until God shows me how something very positive can come from the things that make us the maddest, saddest, angriest, or most fearful. Maybe I’m just finally learning the lesson God has been trying to beat into my head with a two by four for all these years. Life doesn’t go how we plan it. Someone once said, we make plans and God laughs. I always hated that saying, like God was mocking us. I’ve come to realize He’s laughing because He knows how much better His plan for us is versus what we can imagine (and plan) for ourselves.
Why am I even thinking about this today? The very first message I read this morning when I woke up was one that scared and upset me immediately. Then I finished reading it, and was relieved, and thanking God for His blessings on our family. My brother-in-law, sister-in-law and niece lost everything in a horrible apartment fire very early this morning. They are fine. I stalked a couple of their local news broadcasts and found that NO ONE was seriously injured in this fire. It was a big one, sounds like their whole building is a total loss. I imagine there were probably 20+ units in their building alone. (I could be wrong.) But no one lost their life. No one will have to spend months, and months in the hospital going through extensive surgeries and intensive therapy. Yes, they will have to completely rebuild their lives. Most of the residents got out with the clothes on their backs, and barefoot. It was early, early morning, so most were probably still in bed. The Red Cross in on scene helping out, and the apartment complex is offering other vacant apartments to the displaced residents. They just have to replace all of their material possessions. Horrible, stressful, not fun, certainly. They have their lives! My 11-year-old niece is safe & healthy, and still has her Dad and step-mom. My husband still has his older brother, and my mother-in-law didn’t have to bury one of her children. My brother-in-law still has his wife and daughter. What more could any of us ask for? Yes, the next 6-12 months are going to be hard, refurnishing their “home.” Home isn’t the building, that’s a House, a Home is the place where your family is. They still have each other, and everything else will come. Maybe I’m speaking out of turn, but I pray that they can see the Blessing in this inconvenience. I refuse to call it a tragedy, because they are all still alive. Is it traumatic, difficult, and stressful. Heck yes. They are blessed with the opportunity to rebuild their household. It could have been so much worse. I also know that God has something amazing planned to come out of this. We just have to be patient, and willing to see it when it comes.
Oh, and I want to send a shout out to all the folks donating things to help get them through, and to start putting their disrupted lives back together. You guys are the bomb! God Bless! To my sister-in-law, Mugs, thanks for getting the ball rolling, and playing intermediary for us, with their immediate needs, clothing sizes, and such. I know your biggest brother, sis-in-law R, and niece A appreciate it.