Tuesday, September 4, 2012

God Surprises

I've never been one for surprises - in fact, I've been known to find out about a few surprises that were planned for me because of my controlling inquisitive nature.  Like the time a big surprise party was planned for me at my favorite restaurant many years ago.  I had plans for that night with a friend, but my husband kept telling me I couldn't do it.  "But it's my birthday! I can do what I want to!" I exclaimed.  But he was adamant that I could not do what I wanted to that night (although he seemingly had nothing else planned for me in it's place).  Well, after much hoo-hah, I found out about the party.  I walked in to 15 of my closest friends yelling "surprise" and, of course, felt like a fool for ever making a big deal out of it.

Fast forward to today...I still don't like surprises, but mainly when I know something is up - but just don't know what it is.

And yet this week I found myself surprised by God.  This week was like a bunch of little surprise parties that He was throwing me.  I know that in life, there are seasons of great disappointment and heartache, and then there are the times when God surprises you out of the blue, just to remind you that He sees you and He loves you.

The first one was our trip to Yosemite.  Our car broke down last week and we had no air conditioner.  We did not want to travel through 100 degree days with no air.  I looked into renting a vehicle, without the intent to rent, but got an amazing deal on a rental car.  When we got there to pick it up, they upgraded us for free, and we drove away in a brand new GMC Acadia with this air conditioner that automatically detected the temp in the car and kept it steady the entire time.  I tell you, we felt like we were riding in style.  It was such a fun surprise!

We had little surprises all throughout that trip, like seeing old friends and spending time with them.  Upon returning from our trip, we got 2 suprise packages in the mail. One from the friend we got to visit on our trip - she sent me this awesome book!

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Later in the day we got another package, and inside was UNO Attack - the game we played in Yosemite with our hosts at the cabin. The boys were in love with this game, so they decided to surprise us and send it to us when we returned home!

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This week also brought the surprise that another friend's adopted baby was born.  They have waited a long time for this, through much heartache and pain (including a failed adoption last year). They were chosen a few months ago to be the birth parents of this baby, but the birth mother went into labor sooner than expected, and they are returning home today with their new baby boy!  The biggest surprise was that they were cleared to bring the baby home only 8 days later (unheard of for an out-of-state adoption)!

Lastly, earlier this year there was a conference that I was going to that I was greatly looking forward to. However, when the conference dates were moved, it fell on my wedding anniversary weekend.  I informed them I would not be attending, and disappointment settled inside.  But this week my husband asked me if I still wanted to go, since we had to change our anniversary plans.  When I emailed to find out if I could still attend the conference, they said YES, and I will get to go after all! This is a writer's conference that will help to inspire writers, and I'm praying God will give me more direction with writing as I attend.  I'm so excited!

I know sometimes it is hard to hear about surprises like these, when you are so desperately needing one of your own.  Maybe you're discouraged and just need to know God understands.  I have so been there. I have found myself jealous of other people's surprises.  I just want to encourage you today that maybe God is surprising you in small ways - be careful not to overlook even the slightest blessings in your day.  I really believe that He loves surprising His children!  And we can find delight in other's surprises too (like my friend's adoption), because He wants to encourage us through those things too.  He has not forgotten YOU today, too!  :)

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