“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 ESV).
A perfect day. We had one. Perfect days are rare on this fallen earth, like gems sprinkled throughout our lives, one sparkling here, another there, golden moments, little foretastes of heaven—come, Lord Jesus! These days are worth noting. They are gifts.
What makes a perfect day?
We hosted a graduation party for the baby of our large multi-generational family. Kith and kin mobilized. A beehive of workers erected a tent in the backyard, hauled in tables and chairs, gathered supplies, retrieved flowers and balloons, prepared and plated food. A shard-eyed older sister caught the misspelling on the cake and redecorated. When guests arrived, everyone transformed into hospitable greeters. All carried out their roles. We did not cease being human for the twenty-four-hour period. Irritations still occurred; but we worked together as a unit to perform a labor of love.
At the end of the day, all were exhausted; but the afterglow proved the best part of the festivities. Laughing and relaxed, we let the mess sit and watched the graduate open her gifts. Then we moved to the fire pit and devoured carryout pizza, lounging by the fire long into the night, enjoying one another’s company. We grabbed the moment and savored it.
What made that day so wonderful? As we dissected the day by firelight, I thanked the Lord for:
- The beautiful weather (God’s part). We prayed. A forecast of rain changed to perfect climactic delight. If he had let it rain, I was prepared to praise him and keep it all under the tent. I had predetermined to be happy either way. He sent sunshine. Thank you, Lord.
- The food stretched (God’s part, a loaves-and-fishes-type gift). As the avalanche of guests began, I prayed for him to multiply the food. The One who made wine at the wedding (another family party) cared about our family as well and stretched our twenty-first-century foodstuffs.
- We got along with one another (God’s grace)—always a miracle when sinners work together. My husband and I are the heartiest, tough-nut sinners of the bunch. By God’s grace alone, we applied our Christianity, letting go of annoyances.
- Difficulties were overcome (God’s grace). See above.
- Many guests came (God’s prompting), thus blessing and encouraging our graduating daughter. The love and generosity shown to her was God’s gift.
- Our adult children were awesome, amazing, stellar, and helpful (God’s gift from the moment of the conception of each one to this very day).
- The equally amazing extended family and friends who helped (God’s gift).
- We all love each other (God’s grace). God is the source of love. Our family is a walking miracle. Every batch of loving sinners is. Our loving friends compounded the blessing.
In other words, the Lord did it, and I recognized his hand. I saw with spiritual eyes. It was all God’s grace: the spiritual growth to believe Romans 8:28 as evidenced in the circumstances and the enablement to rely on Christ for right, kind, and loving reactions. We were merely the recipients of his grace. Again. When we don’t walk in his grace and don’t see clearly, it isn’t so lovely. When we do, it is, no matter the climate, the obstacles, the shortages, or the misspelling of the graduate’s name.
“Is there any encouragement from belonging to Christ? Any comfort from his love? Any fellowship together in the Spirit? Are your hearts tender and compassionate? Then make me truly happy by agreeing wholeheartedly with each other, loving one another, and working together with one mind and purpose” (Philippians 2:1-2 NLT)
Have any perfect days lately?