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1 Peter 5:10 (NIV)

“And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.”

Have you ever had the power go off while taking a shower and the water turn ice cold?  During Spring Break my daughters and I traveled to a lovely resort at a South Carolina beach.  There are houses, condominiums and hotel rooms on the large property.  For our three night stay, we chose the more economical hotel option.  After five hours in the sun and ocean breeze on Day 1, we came back to the hotel room with two queen beds to rest and shower.  We all noticed our bodies were turning pinker than what we had expected.  As I was resting, an unusual noise jolted me and my daughter who was showering yelled, “The power is out.  The water is freezing!”  She stopped the shower with soap still in her hair because the icy water chilled her so much.  I called Guest Services who sent a repairman and in 20 minutes, the power had been fixed which controlled the hot water heater.  I jumped in the shower, lathered up my hair with shampoo, then the power went out.  If I didn’t work fast, then I would’ve had a lot of soap left in my hair too but I hurriedly rinsed my hair then within 10 seconds, the cold water rammed into my sun burned body and I turned it off.  Disappointment filled my head as I departed the shower only having been in there for two minutes.

My daughter called Guest Services again and the maintenance guy returned to reset the electricity.  While air drying my hair on the porch, I knew that we were heading out to eat soon and needed to be sure that we would have power and hot water for when we returned.  Calmly, I called Guest Services again and informed them that I would want to shower upon returning from dinner and wondered if there was another room to move into if the power went out again.  The nice person told me that all hotel rooms were booked but she would let the manager know of what had happened.

To my surprise, while my family was at dinner at a local restaurant, the manager called and invited us to leave our two queen bed room and move into a two bedroom condominium on the resort property for our remaining two night stay!  The maintenance guy had informed the manager that an outside contractor would need to make the necessary repairs which meant that we would have to move out.  Since the hotel was full, we were given an invitation to UPGRADE with no charge to us.  The two bedroom, two bath, large covered porch, living room, kitchen and washer/dryer became our new reality.

When we returned from dinner which had taken an unexpectedly long time, we packed our belongings and loaded them into our car.  The manager had given us our new building’s name and room number.  It was strange to be moving into unknown territory at 10:30 at night.  If we had stayed in our original room though, we would have had issues with power, hot water and air conditioning.  We had come to relax so this Upgrade gave our family an oasis which was so pretty in the morning light.

While sitting on the porch feeling the ocean breeze, I have contemplated how God met our need.  He has always known my needs and always provided with a solution.  He knows when enough is enough and orchestrates events to give upgrades and options.

In reflecting on His goodness to me, I remembered 2 Corinthians 9:8:

“And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.”

He opens doors of opportunity.  We can stay with what we know or trust that He will guide our steps on our new journey.  He has seen the need in our lives.  Trusting Him to work out the details is something that is much easier said than done, but I have seen him upgrade conditions for our family on my Spring Break at the exact time that they were needed.  At first, the new condo was unfamiliar and dark.  We realized though that we needed the space to rest and recover from our sun burns so it has been such a blessing to be in this space.

I know that all believers will get their eternal upgrade to heaven one day, but until then, I will trust Him to provide and guide as new opportunities present themselves to me.  I pray for all my friends from 2 Corinthians 9:8 that God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.  From 1 Peter 5:10, I also pray that after you have suffered a little while, God will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.

Suffering looks different for everyone.  I know that I have felt pain in my body while also feeling anxious about events but I am looking for God to restore me and make me strong, firm and steadfast.  God can be trusted.  He knows.  He sees the end from the beginning and has designed it so that I can’t which is why I must trust Him.  I know that His plans are perfect and so I also pray for myself and my friends this verse from Jeremiah 29:11:  “For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord.  Plans to prosper you and not to harm you.  Plans to give you a hope and a future.”

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