Summary: I would propose to you, a thankful attitude toward the Lord in everything we face, opens our spiritual eyes to see His loving Hands at work. Sometimes our circumstances are not the best, sometimes down right bad.
Title: Add It All Up
Theme: Realizing God Is Watching Over You
Introduction: For our honeymoon, Pennie and I took our mom out to Maine to stay with our sister. We rented a U-haul trailer, hauled our motorcycle from Norton, Ks. to Maine. While there we rode all around Maine, New Hampshire, for a little more than a week. The last week we biked all the way back to Norton, Kansas. We biked down the East Coast, riding through God's beautiful country, stopping to look at different sights, horse farms, entertainment centers and great food. Part of our preparation for the trip, I hung two little Christian bells on the bike, a litter reminder to us that God gave us each other, He was the One Who gave this opportunity to enjoy this trip and He was the One Who would watch over us.
We were five hours from the perfect honeymoon when just east of Augusts, Ks - we crossed a bridge traveling sixty-five miles per hour, the back tire deflated, rapidly. I tell you that was one wild ride by the time we got stopped. That incident took us from one side of the highway to the other, crossing in and out of traffic lanes. We were just along for the ride - there was no control upon our part. Literally, by God's grace, blessing the efforts I made when practicing some motorcycle skill drills, I was able to keep the bike up.
There we were, standing along the highway realizing that could have been a really bad deal. We could have been seriously hurt, and there was not even one scratch on the bike. As we stood there, Pennie was getting on the phone for help, my attention was drawn to those two Christian bells, hanging on the bike, praying in my heart, "Thanks Lord!"
While waiting for the phone to connect to the internet, Pennie said, "You know what is amazing, just before the incident, the traffic was congested, both East and West bound lanes were very heavy with traffic (two lane highway). Just before we crossed the bridge, from someone reason the traffic had thinned out. No vehicles behind us, no traffic coming toward us, clear traffic lanes." If the traffic had been congested, like it was before the back tire went flat, we would have likely ran into a vehicle or the vehicle behind could had ran over us. As soon as we got stopped, placing the bike on it's kick stand, the traffic returned to normal congested flow.
When we needed extra help, a police officer would come by, providing water, charging up Cel-phones and assistance with loading the bike on the trailer. We had a wonderful time on our honeymoon and we saw Satan do what he tries to do, discourage people who trying to live out what God has called them to do. So many disappointing things happened on the final journey home, it could had put a bummer attitude over the whole trip. When we added it all up, the ride was worth the taking. Those two little bells are still on our bike, when I see them hanging, I am reminded that God was with us, in the great moments, the dangerous time and even during the frustrating times.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 says, "Give thanks in all circumstance, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus."
Proposition: I would propose to you, a thankful attitude toward the Lord in everything we face, opens our spiritual eyes to see His loving Hands at work. Sometimes our circumstances are not the best, sometimes down right bad.
In Psalm 77 we read of a man of God who has become melancholy, he is sorrowful, he complains, the all night prayer he offered brought no comfort or deliverance' (Matthew Henry Commentary; Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible) He writes, "Will the Lord reject forever, will He never show His favor again? Has His unfailing love vanished forever? Has His promise failed for all time? Has God forgotten to be merciful? Has He in His anger withdrawn His compassion? (Psalm 77:7-9)
As we continue to read Psalm 77, we see the writer focused on real truth, God's goodness, past faithfulness, His ability to do miracles, deliver His people, even lead without being seen. (Psalm 77:10-20; Willmington's Bible Hand Book; Believer's Bible Commentary; Nelson's New Illustrated Bible Commentary)
Interrogative Sentence: Just what are three truths to keeping our spiritual eyes open?
Transitional Sentence: The first truth is, we have it so good. 1 Timothy 6:17says, “Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment.”