“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Today I’m thanking God for nothing.
The last 24 hours have been a whirlwind in our family. Yesterday I was on my way home from an after-church lunch with friends when I received a phone call from my mom.
“What are you doing?
“Oh, nothing… just getting gas before driving home.”
“It’s probably no big deal, but I wanted you to know your dad just got admitted to the hospital.”
Not exactly news I would call no big deal.
Of course I didn’t drive home, but instead drove straight to the emergency room, where my dad had been admitted for chest pains. 7 ½ year ago I drove to the same hospital while my dad underwent quadruple bypass surgery. The familiar sinking, kind-of-sick-to-my-stomach-nervous feeling I had back then washed over me again as I drove into the hospital parking lot.
We sat with dad all day, while they monitored him. Nurses came and went, prodded and poked. We watch the Bronco’s and Tim Tebow while we anxiously waited. Between the football game and my dad’s heart condition, I wondered if my nerves could stand anything more.
This morning I was in a meeting when I received a phone call from my mom, which seemed odd since I had just spoken with her 30 minutes before. I knew it couldn’t be good.
“Honey, would you mind coming to the hospital right now and sitting with your dad? Something’s wrong with me and I’m going to drive myself to the doctor and I don’t want your dad to be alone.”
I suggested that instead of making the 30 minute drive to her doctor, she walk downstairs and have herself admitted to the emergency room.
10 minutes after our phone call I drove into the hospital parking lot—again. First I checked on mom. Nurses came and went. Doctor’s asked questions. I ran upstairs to check on dad. Turns out he was more concerned for her than for himself, so he promptly sent me back to her side.
She was prodded and poked. Tests were run. Periodically I made my way to the second floor to give Dad updates on Mom, and then brought back Mom updates on Dad.
It was a circus. I guess our family motto should be something like “Go Big or Go Home”.
Finally all the tests were complete and the news came back. First Mom’s results.
“We didn’t find anything suspicious. Nothing seems to be wrong. You can go home.”
“The tests came back negative. There’s nothing to worry about.”
So today I am thanking God for nothing.
How often do we get bored with the “nothings” of life? As in “I’m doing nothing special” or “We have nothing exciting planned” or “Nothing seems to be happening.”
Nothing can be a little slice of heaven.
Tonight I throw a load of laundry into the washing machine. Fold another one. I sit and linger over dinner with my youngest daughter. Talk on the phone with a dear friend. Play Words with Friends. Do nothing.
I bask in the sweetness of nothing and I thank God for every single little minute of a thousand nothings like these.
If you’re going through a difficult time, just remember it may seem like God is doing nothing, but God is always up to something.
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. ” – Romans 8:28
Let us pray…
I thank You for the purpose You place in everything. Give me Your perspective today as I struggle with some things that may not be going “right.” I know You have a greater plan through it all.
Thank You for all the little “nothings” that we take for granted everyday.
I love You and long to live for You.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.