Reverend Tim McGuire
Count Your Blessings
“And there are also many other things which Jesus did,
the which, if they should be written everyone, I suppose that even the world
itself could not contain the books that should be written” (John 21:25).
Greetings in Christ,
My Monday this week consisted of insurance agents and adjusters, repair estimates, and rent-a-car companies. Ever had a Monday? Of course you have… we all do! Driving to Campbellsville to retrieve the only available vehicle in a sixty mile radius; these lyrics were stuck on repeat:
Count your blessings, name them one by one, Count your blessings, see what God hath done! Count your blessings, name them one by one, Count your many blessings, see what God hath done
It’s a familiar hymn… one of the favorites of my childhood church with a very limited repertoire. So the lyrics were burned into my memory at a very early age… and that’s a good thing. Over the years this song seems to resurface again and again, and quite frankly has proven beneficial at varying stages of life’s journey… mostly on Mondays. Honestly, I think I pull it out whenever I get to feeling sorry for myself. Whenever the world comes crashing down, and nothing seems to make sense… when joy is swallowed by sorrow or hope is challenged by fear… the Great Physician’s divine prescription never wavers: sing twice… take a pencil and make a list.
Ever tried it? I mean really… bet you can’t do it. Oh I am sure if you try you could get started. Maybe you would begin with Jesus, the cross of Calvary and the love of God. Most move quickly to family and the provisions of life. We would be careful to include the roof over our head, and the food on our table, the car we drive. Don’t forget to add your cell phone, or the other electronic toys that seem to demand so much of our time and attention. Rarely do we think of good health as a blessing, but let our health or wellness be brought into question, and instinctively it moves to number one on the list.
My point is when we stop to count all God has done; we soon discover God is still doing; usually far more than we normally pause to thank God for. It has a mathematical effect. For every blessing we count, we discover multiple blessings yet to be added. For this reason, an exhaustive list can never be calculated, and even if it were possible, you would spend each minute of each day compiling your list, and then as the Apostle John surmised “the world itself could not contain the books that should be written.” And that’s just your book; imagine the library if/when we included everyone’s list?
Nonetheless counting one’s blessings remains a great spiritual exercise. I have discovered it is difficult to impossible for anyone to wallow in doubt, fear, or self-pity while basking in God’s blessings. Worry over little appears futile when we are reminded of God’s much, and the sin of envy is only magnified when we balance the wants of this world with the lavish love continually poured out by the Father.
So go ahead… try it. “Count your blessings, name them one by one…” and I promise… “it will surprise you what the Lord has done!”
Together in His service,