There’s not a one of us who doesn’t own a treasure trove of extraordinary memories—beautiful moments, tragic times, super satisfying experiences, painful losses. But if we stacked up all of those memories against our dull, ordinary days, guess which stack would be greater?

This past month my husband and I have gone through weeks of fear and uncertainty. Moments that seemed everything we deemed normal was being tossed out the window.

And all this would require us to acclimate ourselves to an unwanted new normal. And I’ve spent time looking back and longing for the ordinary days. Days I had rushed through—unnoticed and unthankful.

In our ordinary days, we pedal faster to keep up the pace and cover the bases, sometimes never pausing to thank the Lord for the ability to maintain that day’s journey. We murmur and complain when our days become weeks, even months, of muddled housework, homework, yard work, earning a living work, and taking care of a multitude of other ordinary needs we’ve faced.

But the rhythm of life is never the same, it’s always changing, and aren’t we glad it’s varied? In Ecclesiastes 7:2-5, God tells us:

“It is better to go to a house of mourning than to go to a house of feasting, because that is the end of every man, and the living takes it to heart. Sorrow is better than laughter, for when a face is sad a heart may be happy. The mind of the wise is in the house of mourning while the mind of fools is in the house of pleasure.”

And a note in the margin of my Bible, alongside these verses says:

“God allows adversity to bring our lives back into balance.” So, when times are hard and we long for the sweet memories of yesterday, remember:

“In the day of prosperity be happy, but in the day of adversity consider—God has made the one as well as the other” (Ecclesiastes 7:14 NIV);

And we are to rest in the peace of His presence.

My notes in the margin again remind: “Learn to respond to God by asking, what is He trying to teach me? What does balance look like in my life…in our marriage?

“Revive me according to Thy lovingkindness, so that I may keep the testimony of Thy mouth” (Psalm 119:88 NIV).

And I choose to find gratitude as I visit the memories of this past month and recognize the hand of God from the large to the minor details Dick and I have and are going through. Some of you are in the middle of tragedy and pain right now, and like me, you long for the memories of simple, ordinary days. But I ask the Spirit of the Lord to remind you and me:

“There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven—”(Ecclesiastes 3:1 NIV).


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DiAne Gates

Texas writer, DiAne Gates, illustrates, photographs, and writes for children and YA, as well as serious non-fiction for adults. She works as a freelance artist and has written and photographed for the East Texas Rodeo Association magazine, which gave birth to the western rodeo adventure series, released by Prism Book Group in August of 2015. ROPED--Available at Wife, mother, and Mimi, whose passion is to share those hard life lessons God allows. Lessons she hopes will leap from the page into your heart.

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