One of my favorite childhood books is, “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day.” The brilliant little story depicts the daily frustrations that create a terrible, horrible day for a child: gum in the hair, dropping a sweater in the sink, tripping over a skateboard, and all the no good, very bad things in between.
My freshman year in college I had a knee injury that required me to travel home for surgery. The day I returned to campus, I hobbled around on crutches sporting a massive brace on my leg. I also returned to campus the day after an ice storm, so hobbling outside became more like sliding. On crutches. With a knee brace.
I also returned to campus to find that the elevator in my dorm building was broken. I then discovered that not only would I be required to limp down four flights of stairs to get out of my dorm, but I’d need to stumble down two additional flights to get to my music classes. Because those elevators were not working either.
That day I returned to campus was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.
Everyday, Ordinary Suffering
The reality is that life is filled with ordinary hardships. I’m not talking about the catastrophic or traumatic events that do occur, but rather the difficulties that we face on a regular basis. Most of us don’t wake up anticipating these challenges; in fact, the way we often react to everyday trials proves that we expect life to be void of them.
When a child wakes up sick, when we run into a conflict with a co-worker, when an assignment is missed, or travel is delayed, we almost immediately react in frustration or anger because we’ve begun to believe that ordinary suffering shouldn’t be a part of our daily existence. But Jesus did not come to earth to save us from our suffering; He came to save us from our sin.
Meeting Jesus in Everyday, Ordinary Suffering
So, what if we entered the day with a different perspective?…