I will thank You, Lord, with all my heart; I will talk about all Your wonderful acts. I will celebrate and rejoice in You; I will sing praises to Your name, Most High. (Psalm 9:1, CEB)
On Saturday, my daughter, Hope, graduated from high school. We felt so blessed that, after the issues with the pandemic, we were able to be there - in person! The Superior High School emailed several times, reminding everyone that we were meeting at the stadium, rain or shine. Only if there were thunderstorms would it be postponed - but it still would happen! I planned to wear a very warm outfit, as we live in Superior and typically the day would be overcast, windy and cold (meaning 50 degrees).
It turned out to be 97 degrees on metal bleachers in direct sun! As one might have guessed, there were plenty of things to complain about: the heat, the sun, the bleachers, the time of day of the ceremony, the need for more water, the sunscreen not working and… Instead, I found myself taking in a graduation event like I never have before. I reminded myself to take a deep breath. As I exhaled to look around, I immersed myself in the moment. This year taught me to find the blessing in the current circumstance, to praise God for this very opportunity and to enjoy where I am and what I am doing.
Friends, as we worship in sometimes uncomfortable pews – remember when we were not able to do so! As we “have to go” to a wedding or funeral or graduation or whatever - remember when such events were cancelled. As we wait impatiently for a performance (or other venue) to start – remember when these opportunities were not available. We are a forgetful people! For most of us, the pandemic will soon be just a memory. So, let us not forget the lessons we have learned and as a people of God: to be thankful, joy filled, and a blessing.
My prayer is simple: God, help us to be thankful in this moment. Show us the joy of today. Let us be a blessing. Amen.