Life can get pretty predictable. Your daily routine becomes second nature, with the time marked by mindless commutes and the same-old meals. You don’t question what you do, because you’ve always done it. It’s comfortable, it works. And you don’t think about your chores, your work, or even your commute as a blessing, because it’s just what has to be done.

Floating through life, you miss what it means to live…

…until your life gets t-boned by an unexpected tragedy. Until life firmly takes you by the shoulders and shakes, pleading, “Wake up! Wake up before it’s over!”

Sometimes hurt and heartbreak are the shock to our senses that we need to make us realize what a blessing it is to simply be alive. God never desires misfortune, but He allows it to occur. And through it, He is calling out to us: “Wake up!”

A few weeks ago, I was in my first car accident. All things considered, it was a “relatively minor” crash. It was in a residential area, so we were moving slowly; no one was badly injured, although our cars were totaled… But even then – when I struggled to open my car door, when I looked at our crumpled cars, when the EMT told me to “get my heart rate down” –

I realized how lucky I was to just be alive.

I saw the lampposts my car narrowly missed, the pedestrians who could have been waiting to cross the street, the other cars around the busy intersection. I saw my crushed rear-door, leaving me bruised but not broken. I was lucky. I was blessed. I was in God’s hands.

When I find myself becoming anxious about “what-ifs,” I try to remind myself that “Anything could happen at any moment, so what good does worrying do?” But you never expect something to actually happen. And when it does, it’s like being thrown into an icy lake of reality. Now you’re certainly awake, and the trick is to not allow routine to lull you back to sleep.

But there’s more to it than not worrying about the unknown. I was reminded once again that I am truly in God’s hands and that the best thing (and maybe the only thing) I can do is to trust in Him. Without Him, I am nothing – There would be nothing. But in His mercy, here we are: sheltered in the palm of His hand, under His loving watch, on a firm foundation while the storms of life try to push us down.

“Remember life and then your life becomes a better one,” echoes Lukas Graham’s verse through my mind.

You are alive, you are breathing. Thank God.

If you have a job, a roof over your head, food on the table: Thank God. If you have a pile of dirty dishes, an irritating neighbor, a leaky faucet: Thank God. You are alive.

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