And the angel said unto them, "Fear not, for behold I bring you good tidings
of great joy, which shall be to all people."
On August 11th, 2011, a 16-year-old young man, Cole, dove into a river where he was hanging out with friends, and hit his head on a rock. He damaged his spine and became a quadriplegic. At that point, his life seemed very uncertain, nobody knew what was going to happen or what to expect. Fast forward 10 years later and here I am watching a video that his wife put together in honor of his 10-year journey.
I had been following his videos for a brief period, so I was aware of some of his challenges and successes. However, as I watched this video I was truly moved, I was moved and encouraged to see how far he has come. During his ten-year journey, he met his wife, seven years after the accident. She was helping him with therapy and their relationship blossomed until they finally decided to get married about six months ago. I look at this young man’s life and I see the goodness of God.
At the start of the video his wife put together, one of the people honoring him mentioned that he had stated that he was thankful that the accident had happened because he never would have had all the wonderful experiences he has had thus far. He has accomplished things that he probably never would have accomplished had he not had this accident. To date, he has graduated from college, participated in a number of sporting activities, coached a basketball team for the handicapped, travelled to various places, gone hiking with his wife because that is what she loves, learned to drive, of course got a girlfriend who became his wife when he thought that that would never happen, they have their own home and he works. I have simply put a few accomplishments in a nutshell but believe me he has done a lot!
And on top of all of that, he chooses to be positive and has had speaking engagements where he and his wife have encouraged people in the area of positivity and inclusivity. When you look at his life you realize that life is really what we choose to make of it. But when I look at his life I see the goodness of God, the power of God, the awesomeness of God. I see a God who has been faithful to bring him through this tough situation and make him the success that he is. He is nothing without God!
As I mentioned earlier, he had said that he was thankful that the accident had happened because he realizes that so much good has come out of it. He reminds me of my own attitude over the years. God has brought me to the point where I have learned to be thankful not just in spite of but for bad things that have happened. I have seen God bring good out of those bad situations. Today as I remembered certain experiences, I found myself thankful again because those experiences taught me forgiveness and forgiving others has been one of the most liberating experiences of my life. Those experiences have helped highlight things in my life I needed to work on that I may never have worked on otherwise. You see, God is so good and so loving that He uses everything, the good and the bad, to bring the best out of us. He uses painful experiences to help us accomplish things that we never would have accomplished otherwise, even to reach and inspire people that we never would have been able to had we not been through that painful time. I love to say nothing is wasted by God because my experiences have taught me this. In the Bible, Job lost everything and instead of receiving comfort and encouragement, he was put down and blamed for what had happened to him. Yet, as tough as it was for him, if he had not gone through what he did, he never would have experienced God’s phenomenal goodness to him at the end of his trial. It was as if he had lost nothing because he received double the blessings!
None of us like pain or trials but these are a part of life and in fact, these are what God uses to mold, shape and even teach us to just be thankful. It’s easy to be thankful when everything is going our way, but when we’re thankful in the midst of tough times, I think this brings the greater blessings. When we can praise and worship God in tough times, we’re setting ouselves up for blessings and opportunities that we never saw coming. When God’s Word says, “In everything give thanks...” (1 Thessalonians 5:18) God knows why. When we are thankful in everything, it develops our character, it improves our attitude, in short, it changes our life.
If you have not yet accepted Jesus Christ into your life as Lord and Savior, please do so now. When you have God on your side, no matter what you go through, He is able to take it and do something beautiful with it. After all, with God, NOTHING IS WASTED!
This blog provides inspirational nuggets inspired by the Word of God and serves to encourage and motivate Christians in their Christian walk.