Count Your Blessings

Sunday, June 19, 2011
"Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so." We all know the words to the old nursery rhyme, but do we really know it?

Sometimes I play a little thought game and ask myself "What is the worst possible thing that could happen to my life?", IE: what event(s) would most alter the course of my life? (Not to be confused with "What is the worst thing that could happen IN my life?", for which the answer is easy: the loss of a family member or close friend.)

Well the answer would probably be me losing a job and/or losing all of my stuff. Let's say I lost my job(s) and my house burned down. That would be devastating to me because everything that I have worked for and everything that I own would be gone almost instantly.

What would I do next?

Well I have renter's insurance, so that would cover my stuff, but it wouldn't cover where I would sleep that night (or the next month for that matter). Insurance is only be the first step on the road to recovery.

So I would turn to family. Between my sister, my mom, my dad, my grandmother, and two sets of aunts/uncles/cousins, I have no doubt that SOMEONE could find an empty bed or couch for me to sleep on until I get my feet back under me. (My brother, who just moved to the Frozen Tundra of Canada, sadly doesn't count as it would be too far to travel just to sleep on a couch.)

But what if they weren't able to help? Later this week my entire family is going on a cruise. What would happen if I lost my job, my house burned down, and the cruise ship sank and I was the only one left?

Well then I would call my church and they would help. I am absolutely positive of ten people who would INSTANTLY open their homes for me if needed, and that is only counting fellow staff members! I know of another ten or more people in the congregation that wouldn't hesitate to do the same!

But what if I lost my job, my house burned down, the cruise ship sank, and armageddon happened and no one in my church was left alive?

Well at that point I am screwed! (Actually it is more more like I took that game one step too far.)

But really, I have played out the above thought game several times in my head and there is not a single way (outside of armageddon) where I would end up homeless. No matter how hard I try to mess with my life (in a theoretical sense) I end up surrounded by family and/or friends that care deeply for me. I attribute this to the amazing love that God has surrounded me with and the many blessings he pours out on my life.

(Am I saying that the homeless are not loved or blessed by God? In no way! God loves and blesses everyone in different ways, the above is just one way I am able to personify what God has done in my life. As an example, today at church a guy walked in off of the street and needed some help. Our church was able to help him and in doing so we were a blessing in his life and we showed God's love to him.)

How has God shown his love for you in your life?

My grandfather (Ray Kelling) was an amazing man, and it breaks my heart that he died before I really got to know him (or even before I knew what it would be like to miss someone that amazing). He struggled with cancer for many, many years until it finally took his life. One of the few relics I have left as a memory of him is a recording of him singing (with my grandmother accompanying on organ) "Count Your Many Blessings". (You can download the file by right clicking and choosing "Save As": Link.) The old hymn states:

So, amid the conflict whether great or small,
Do not be discouraged, God is over all;
Count your many blessings, angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.

Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your many blessings, see what God hath done!

Today, may you count your many blessings, and see that God loves you and cares for you. May you know without a doubt that God created the entire universe but loves YOU so much that he sent his only son to die on the cross so that you would know his love for you.


PS: For an example on how to count your blessings amidst strife, click on back to an older post of mine titled "Oh Dear, I hit a Deer! The lesson I learned from hitting a 6 point buck.

PPS: I apologize that this post is not more organized than it is. I would like it to flow better but due to the many things going on right now I don't have the brain power to organize it any better. I hope that the unflowieness of it didn't hinder the point I was trying to make.