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“For every activity there is a right time and procedure, even though a person’s troubles are heavy on him.” Ecclesiastes 8:6 CSB

I was walking out the door the other night to teach a tennis lesson when my husband dropped a bomb on me.  He had received an email that was filled with strife. We were in the middle of a Virginia heat wave, I had already taught for four hours in it, and now was facing three more hours of teaching.  I had been praying all afternoon for a thunderstorm to hit so I could cancel, but as I watched the radar it wasn’t God’s will. Not one drop landed on us. I could not sit and talk, I could not let myself get caught in the storm, I had to go teach a lesson to a student who is very dear to my heart.  He has no self confidence, he’s 15 years old and thinks everything he does is wrong. I know this because every time he makes a mistake he berates himself. The look on his face breaks my heart. But teach this lesson is what God was calling me to do, He obviously didn’t want me to worry about the email.

I headed to the courts and met my student, as I started feeding him balls I was praying for rain.  I was having a hard time concentrating, but I knew he deserved my best. My problems were not his problems.  I remembered my training, if you’re only teaching to make money, give it up, you’re students deserve better from you.  I had to capture my thoughts and focus on what God had before me. Instead of thinking of the email, I started preaching to myself.  “God, You are bigger than any problem I face. God you already know the answer to this. God, I need to trust you and focus on the task at hand.  God, obviously You are not going to make it rain, obviously You want me to teach right now.” And so I taught, for the next three hours. I loved on the students God sent me, I thanked Him for them, and I taught them to the best of my ability.  God knew exactly what He was doing when He made me live up to my commitments and teach.

God was fulfilling His purpose for my life.  He was teaching me that He really was in control and I needed to trust Him more.  God helped me work through my original emotional response I had to the situation. By the time I had finished teaching, I quickly realized I was overreacting.  The email and the situation weren’t as bad as what I had originally thought. God taught me something that day. He taught me to love those in front of me, He reminded me He’ll take care of all the rest; He is in charge and He knows what He is doing.  He let me know, for the millionth time, His timing is truly perfect.

Bad things will happen in life, to all of us.  None of us are immune, God’s word tells us so in John 16:33, a verse you will hear me reference often.  “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

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