Have you ever noticed that when things are going well in our life we think God is in control, but when things aren’t going well we think He has abandoned us?

I admit I have the tendency to feel sorry myself when things aren’t going my way. In fact if I’m totally honest… there is something inside me that thinks, “I’ve been a good girl; surely God will bless me”. Problem is my idea of blessing and His are two different things.

While I would prefer an easy problem free life, God often takes me to places of pain or discomfort. But get this…

When times are good, be happy; when times are bad, consider this: God has made the one as well as the other. Ecclesiastes 7: 14

When I consider that God is the author of my life and that He ordains both the good and bad times I face, I am forced to take another look at my thoughts of who God is and how He blesses.

I recently read in Andy Andrews’s book, The Final Summit, “A beautiful flower cannot be created without fertilizer.” This quote, along with what Solomon said in Ecclesiastes, gives me a whole new perspective on the manure in my life. It’s meant to grow me so that when I come into full bloom I’ll bring glory to God.

When our perspective of God’s activity in our life is forced into a box labeled “good times”, we fail to see the blessing of our trials. If Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego wouldn’t have been thrown into the fiery furnace they wouldn’t have come out to know that there was a fourth man, Jesus, in the fire with them. Likewise, if you and I don’t experience trials, we’ll never know the joy of having Jesus by our side when we need Him most.