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God’s beauty doesn’t make the world look dull by comparison. No, the world is all the more beautiful for his presence. We all have special people in our lives where when they walk into a room it lights up. God does that with continents, billions of rooms at once. His voice, His smile, His affection radiate from Him, making the world rich with good things, chasing out the shadows and overcoming them.

I’m in a stage of my life where things are looking up. The stage where we dare to hope for big things believing they are possible. We are in an upswing and loving it. I have been trying for a while now (even before the upswing) to thank God for the little things every day, the little things that add up to the big things. It is amazing how much more I see God in the little things, in everyday ordinary things that we take for granted.

I’ve also notice an increase in unexpected frustrations in my life lately: the car having to be fixed, things not working as smoothly as they should at work, forgetting to pay a bill and getting a late fee. On my way to church I went to unlock the car and it wouldn’t unlock. My key doesn’t work well in the lock so after fighting with it I finally go into the car to discover the battery was dead. I had left the headlights on. I know no one else has ever done that. But as I started to swear in frustration it twisted on my tongue and in mid complaint I started singing that old song “This is the Day.” It sounded awful because I was singing it through my teeth. Even when it may sound awful or insincere or make me look crazy I’m trying to change the words that come out of my mouth when I’m upset.

What we say matters. I don’t believe in swearing casually. I will occasionally us a choice word to emphasize a point when angry but lately I’ve been getting worse so even when it sounds stupid or insincere I try to balance the negative with the promises of God. When my car wouldn’t start and my husband had already left for work I was grateful for three friends in particular, two who helped jump my car and the woman who gave me the jumper cables. I was also thankful that I was on my way to church and not on my way to work. God is a lot more understanding of tardiness than my boss.

Something I realized that morning was if I was enjoying the prosperity God was pouring out on me and suffering increased frustration, shock of all shocks, I must be doing something right! I don’t feel like that happens often but on occasion I do something right. I must be learning. There is hope! The Devil can’t stand to see us succeed and God can’t bear to see us atrophy so he allows the Devil to aggravate and frustrate us so we will call on God’s name and not just defeat the enemy but take ownership in our victory. I find I enjoy something more if I’ve had to work for it. Oh sure, if you ask me I’d rather have the world handed to me on a silver platter but would I enjoy it later? Probably not so much. Let the Devil frustrate me all he wants, it will only make me run back to my faithful partner in life, my God. Let him try and trash the life God is giving me every day and it will only backfire because God translates every curse into a blessing. It doesn’t mean I’ll never be frustrated, hurt, or afraid but it does mean if all I do is run back to God and tell the Devil where he can stuff it I’ll come out a better person. I’ll come out closer to the person I was born to be.

I love that God doesn’t keep his presence, strength and beauty to himself but shares it with we who believe. I get to be a part of something bigger. I have to work hard but the end result will be worth it and I’ve already had a taste. Just try and stop me now! Be encouraged!