Posted by: austend | Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Balance the Bad

My pastor made a very wise comment the other day. There are a number of people in my church going through difficulties right now, whether cancer or family problems. It is easy for us to get bogged down in the bad of our lives. My pastor reminded me, though, that we must not focus on the bad. We can’t get out of balance. If we put the bad that is happening in our lives on one end of the scale, and we put all the good in our lives on the other end, I guarantee that the good far outweighs the bad! It doesn’t always feel that God is still good to us when our mother has cancer or when our children are straying as far from the Lord as they can, but we cannot become off-balanced. We must force ourselves to see the good that God is still doing toward us. It is not natural for us to see the good when we are involved in a bad situation. That is why we must cultivate a habit for ourselves of always recognizing God’s goodness to us and thanking Him for it while our lives are essentially “trouble-free” so that when the bad does come, we will be ready for it because we are confident in His eternal goodness.
So, even when your life seems like it is in tatters, lift up your head out of the dark cloud you are in and look around to see what good God has done for you lately. Every breath we take is a gift from God. Every morsel of food that we eat has been provided for us by our Heavenly Father. Every minute of sleep is another gift. The kindness of friends and strangers is yet another grace from Above. If we begin to see all of these “small things” as acts of goodness from God toward us, then we will get a much more balanced view of our lives. We will see that the good really does outweigh the bad.
Thus, even when you are going through the Valley of the Shadow of Death, look to your Guide and thank Him for the little blessings of grace He has given you. Don’t become so focused on the bad and consumed by what awful things He has allowed you to endure that you become bitter against Him. He is always good, and if you look for them, you will always find His acts of goodness toward you. I guarantee you will never have to look that far.


  1. So true Austen, thanks for the encouragement. It has everything to do with being content in Christ despite life’s trials (as my good friend Jeremiah Burroughs would say.)

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