"I wonder why that car is sitting in the middle of the road," I said to my husband Kenya while clutching the steering wheel. I was waiting for a safe time to pull out of the shopping plaza and get into the flow of traffic.
"Uh, honey, I think the driver is letting you through," he replied with a slightly confused look.
"Oh my goodness!" I laughed, feeling silly. "She's waiting for me? And here I was sitting here all this time thinking that vehicle had conked out in the middle of the street or something!"
"That's so sad," Kenya chuckled, shaking his head at me.
I really missed that one.
You see, the cars in the lane closest to me were whizzing by, totally ignoring my left blinker, which is typical.
You know how aggressive drivers do.
As soon as they see you coming, they inch forward to close that gap, making it impossible for you to pull out in front of them.
But the woman in the farthest lane, who had a whole row of cars backed up behind her, patiently waited for me.
Once the path was clear, as I drove by the woman, I made sure to wave, smile, and nod to thank her for letting me through.
Initially, her small act of benevolence went right over my head because I'm so used to mean-spirited, aggressive drivers. And after having a really bad accident that sent me into premature labor in 2006, I'm a very careful motorist. I check, double-check, and triple-check before placing my foot on the gas pedal.
I can still remember that traumatic collision so clearly. The impact of the hit was so violent, my SUV nearly flipped over. I could literally see the street inches away from my driver's side window, so I braced myself for the worst.
But then, something happened.
I felt the truck jerk backward, away from the asphalt that my vehicle seemed destined to slam into.
Though the truck was totaled, it landed right-side-up, and ended up parked next to the curb out of the dangers of oncoming traffic. None of the three children had a single scratch on them. And even though my youngest son, Kaleb, came a little early, he was a perfectly healthy baby boy.
I'm so grateful Daily Cup family.
Things could have been so much worse had it not been for the grace and protection of God. Yes, I was seriously injured and did some major damage to my Sciatic nerve which made it impossible to walk for a while. But hey, I can walk today.
And my family is strong.
Even after all I've been through in 2011, I know God has been better than good to me.
I could have died when I went into cardiac arrest after my surgery and doctors called out "Code Blue!" But God said not so, which is why I'm still here. My mother could have succumbed to her battle with breast cancer, but God said not so, and she lived to tell about it.
Some obstacles you faced in 2011 could have taken you out, stolen your sanity, or ruined you for life, but God said not so.
You're still here.
And that's a real good reason to praise your way into 2012.
As you head into a new year, don't take any regrets with you, only praise. Don't dwell on the worst, but focus, instead, on the fact that it could have been worse.
I know you may have experienced some setbacks.
So did I.
I have some scars and memories of personal trauma, but I came through it.
So did you.
So let's praise our way into 2012 together, because He turned our tests into testimonies and transformed our trials into triumphs.
Isn't God so good?
As you prepare for a new year, I want to stir a prayer found in Psalm 5:11 NIV into the last cup of inspiration I'll prepare for you this year. The scripture says, "But let all who take refuge in you be glad; let them ever sing for joy. Spread your protection over them, that those who love your name may rejoice in you."
When you drink down the contents of your cup today, your rejoicing and praising will be an answer to that prayer. As an individual who loves God and has found refuge in Him, He has put a song on your lips and a praise in your heart. He has given you joy unspeakable in every season.
He has given you more reasons than you can name to praise your way into 2012.
Through the good and bad, ups and downs, happy days and sad days, the Lord has been with you, and will continue to be with you in the coming year.
Now let's pray together.
Father, I thank You for everything You brought me through in 2011. I didn't expect to face many of the trials, setbacks, and difficult circumstances I encountered, but You sustained me through every single one of them. That's why I'm praising You and rejoicing today. No matter how unpleasant the situations, I know they could have been far worse. So thank You God for loving me, keeping me, and guiding me through 2011. I know You will do the same in the coming year. For this, I praise You! In Jesus' name, Amen.
As always, thanks for reading and until next time... may today's cup of inspiration uplift, encourage, and empower you!