Bad Day?

Have you ever had a bad day? Okay, so maybe that’s a dumb question. We’ve all had probably more than one or two.

Last week, I received a call early in the morning from my mom saying that my grandmother had passed away after suffering a stroke. She was getting older, but it was a bit unexpected. Not exactly the way I wanted to start the day. As the day progressed, I had some difficult conversations with people that contributed to the ‘bad’-ness of my day. Driving home, I had some antsy guy behind me wanting to get into the left hand turn lane. He was trying to sneak around me, but I couldn’t move any farther forward to help him out. He honked and waved his hands. When he finally squeezed around me to the turn-lane after the cars in front of me started moving, he sped at break-neck speed into a line of four other cars waiting to turn left in front of him. He was racing to get nowhere. As I drove by, he flicked me off. I said to myself, ‘That was the perfect capper on what is turning out to be a bad day.’

What is it that makes us say a day is ‘bad’? More often than not, it’s the things we experience in a day that aren’t what we would like them to be.

Have you ever had a bad week, or a bad month? How about a bad year?

Recently, I’ve been wondering about how I view life. If I say my day is ‘bad’, how am I limiting myself. If I say that a conversation or a week in my life is ‘bad’, what am I missing within it?

The following words have been reverberating in my mind recently: “We also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out His love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom He has given” (Romans 5:3-5)

What does Paul mean here? How can my life circumstances, including the suffering – the ‘bad’ stuff – become means for God’s work within my life?

What would happen if I reconsidered my ‘bad’ day as God’s day. How does God want to produce perseverance – sticking with it – in my life? How can I let God shape me into someone who is persistent in doing good (Romans 3:7)?

That’s my aim these days, although I falter in it. I want to become like Jesus in the bad days and the good days.

6 thoughts on “Bad Day?

  1. I rarely read the entire e-mails that you send us from the Ave and this week for some reason, because I was completely non-rushed, I read the entire thing. I enjoyed reflecting on the thought of a “bad day”. I say “I have a bad day” quite often, but I should allow all days to be good because of what God may be teaching me through the hard times and bad days. Thanks for making me think in the middle of my day!

  2. Lately, I’ve been finding myself thanking God for my sufferings, for my hard times. This attitude hasn’t been in my life forever, but I am so glad that I finally woke up to the wonders of God.

    I’ve been having some rough times this school year, things in my personal life and school life. But one thing that has been quite amazing is the calming feeling God has given me when dealing with these things. I have been angry, upset, troubled, sad and so on, but for whatever reason, I’ve been super eager to thank God for my sufferings. I think hard times is one of the most powerful and direct ways that God shows us his love, and when we are able to realize that, we are able to grow and live in His glory.

    I love that verse in Romans, I think it’s so true, and the more I remember it in my daily life, the more I love God, because I’m able to see how my tough times are stretching me and helping me grow in so many ways.

    Jesus never said that being a Christian was going to be easy, and sometimes it seems like the longer you are a Christian, the harder your life can get. And from hearing testimonies and stories from other Christians, I’m so anxious to see how God will use Good times and Bad times in my life to mature me and draw me closer to Him.

  3. Sam, I appreciated what you wrote: “I think hard times is one of the most powerful and direct ways that God shows us his love, and when we are able to realize that, we are able to grow and live in His glory.” How true.

    I was recently given a link to a story related to the Atlanta shootings that made me stop and think about this in greater depth. It is definitely worth reading: http://edition.cnn.com/2005/LAW/03/14/smith.transcript/index.html.

  4. Sam, I appreciated what you wrote: “I think hard times is one of the most powerful and direct ways that God shows us his love, and when we are able to realize that, we are able to grow and live in His glory.” How true.

    I was recently given a link to a story related to the Atlanta shootings that made me stop and think about this in greater depth. It is definitely worth reading: http://edition.cnn.com/2005/LAW/03/14/smith.transcript/index.html.

  5. I came across this quote today…and thought it might fit well with this topic. it’s a bit long…but thoughtful nonetheless.

    “Did you ever stop to ask what a yoke is really for? Is it to be a burden to the animal which wears it? It is just the opposite: it is to make its burden light. Attached to the oxen in any other way than by a yoke, the plow would be intolerable; worked by means of a yoke, it is light. A yoke is not an instrument of torture; it is an instrument of mercy. It is not a malicious contrivance for making work hard; it is a gentle device to make hard labor light. [Christ] knew the difference between a smooth yoke and a rough one, a bad fit and a good one… The rough yoke galled, and the burden was heavy; the smooth yoke caused no pain, and the load was lightly drawn. The badly fitted harness was a misery; the well fitted collar was “easy”. And what was the “burden”? It was not some special burden laid upon the Christian, some unique infliction that they alone must bear. It was what all men bear: it was simply life, human life itself, the general burden of life which all must carry with them from the cradle to the grave. Christ saw that men took life painfully. To some it was a weariness, to others failure, to many a tragedy, to all a struggle and a pain. How to carry this burden of life had been the whole world’s problem. And here is Christ’s solution: “Carry it as I do. Take life as I take it. Look at it from my point of view. Interpret it upon my principles. Take my yoke and learn of me, and you will find it easy. For my yoke is easy, sits right upon the shoulders, and therefore my burden is light.”

    … Henry Drummond (1851-1897), Pax Vobiscum

  6. I came across this quote today…and thought it might fit well with this topic. it’s a bit long…but thoughtful nonetheless.

    “Did you ever stop to ask what a yoke is really for? Is it to be a burden to the animal which wears it? It is just the opposite: it is to make its burden light. Attached to the oxen in any other way than by a yoke, the plow would be intolerable; worked by means of a yoke, it is light. A yoke is not an instrument of torture; it is an instrument of mercy. It is not a malicious contrivance for making work hard; it is a gentle device to make hard labor light. [Christ] knew the difference between a smooth yoke and a rough one, a bad fit and a good one… The rough yoke galled, and the burden was heavy; the smooth yoke caused no pain, and the load was lightly drawn. The badly fitted harness was a misery; the well fitted collar was “easy”. And what was the “burden”? It was not some special burden laid upon the Christian, some unique infliction that they alone must bear. It was what all men bear: it was simply life, human life itself, the general burden of life which all must carry with them from the cradle to the grave. Christ saw that men took life painfully. To some it was a weariness, to others failure, to many a tragedy, to all a struggle and a pain. How to carry this burden of life had been the whole world’s problem. And here is Christ’s solution: “Carry it as I do. Take life as I take it. Look at it from my point of view. Interpret it upon my principles. Take my yoke and learn of me, and you will find it easy. For my yoke is easy, sits right upon the shoulders, and therefore my burden is light.”

    … Henry Drummond (1851-1897), Pax Vobiscum

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