Healing Rays: A Progressive, Positive, Practical Weekly Reflection
by Durrell Watkins
January 26, 2010
"We know that all things work for good for those who love God..." St. Paul (Rom. 8.28)
There is a story about a rabbi who kept having mishaps while traveling. He went to an inn for lodging, but the inn was full. While he was sleeping outdoors, his donkey ran away. Then, he clumsily knocked over and broke his lantern. Instead of getting too upset after each disappointment, he simply affirmed, "All that God does is done well." As one teacher of mine would say, he went to peace instead of to pieces.
The next morning, he learned that marauders had stormed the village he had slept in. They robbed the inn (the one where he couldn't find a room). While he was sleeping outside, if his donkey had not escaped, it might have made noise which would have attracted the bandits' attention. Similarly, if he hadn't broken his lamp, the light might have given his location away. He was able to sleep safely while chaos was breaking out all around him because he was able to trust that even in his minor setbacks, something good was possible.
Of course, the bandits should not have terrorized the village, and not everyone was lucky enough to have some happy accidents to keep them safe; but the point of the story is that even when things were difficult, the rabbi chose serenity over anxiety, and blessings were able to come out of his initial disappointments. When things aren't going well, maybe we can affirm that really, everything IS in divine order. Once we get through the experience, we might find that Grace was providing for our needs all along.