The Disappointing Fourth

by Rhonda, July 04, 2022

Fourth of July around our house is a big deal.  Other members of my family host Christmas and Thanksgiving, but I usually host the 4th.  We have fireworks, games, and lots of food.  We decorate cakes in red, white, and blue and we hang flags everywhere we can hang a flag.  Our entire city celebrates this way, with parades and fireworks that go on for days.

So, it was a bummer when I got a call on Friday night from my son.  "I'm not feeling well."

One Covid test later confirmed our fears.  He was positive.   I especially hate it when my family members are ill, but when it happens to a kid who has battled cancer twice, it requires some special handling.

Of course, he wasn't upset that he has Covid.  He was upset to miss the 4th of July party.

I sent out a mass text with the news.  My father mentioned he'd been feeling dizzy lately.  Another test confirmed the second member of our family with Covid.

The 4th of July party wasn't meant to be, so today's been an exceptionally quiet 4th.  My son has been sleeping most of the day, so we've been quiet (except for the fireworks going off all around us).  I haven't felt well, either, and I'm hoping I'm not in for the same fate.  Thank goodness for my daughter who has taken care of both of us today.  

I'm frustrated.  I'm worried - really worried - about my son.  I'm worried I am sick, too, and I can't take time off of work this week.  I'm concerned about my father.  I pout while I hear everyone else having a great time on the 4th.  They're all setting off fireworks, while we are under our blankets trying to sleep and keep up with our cold medicine.  Slowly, today my thoughts began to spiral downwards, towards a pit of self pity and anxiety.

Lord, please help me to see the good in this.  

The good Lord gave me an answer he gives me often.  


An attitude of gratitude ends anxiety.  I need to be grateful my party is cancelled, especially since I don't feel great today.  I need to stay close to the Lord during my times of struggle.  Today gave me the opportunity to do just that.  Instead of decorating cupcakes, I livestreamed a church service I missed yesterday.  I can be mad that I'm not lighting fireworks, or I can be grateful that we have warm beds to rest in, and medication to help us get better.  God always takes care of me, so if I have Covid, then I know he'll manage my commitments.  I don't need to dwell on it.  I can trust Him.  I can choose to be grateful.

1 Thes 5:18 Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

Today, while I stayed in bed, I watched a sermon about the apostle Paul.  He gave thanks in the worst of circumstances, while chained in prison.  Yet, he never asked that people pray for his comfort. Instead, he always asked that God would give him opportunities to spread the gospel.

Sometimes God knows how to drive a point home.

If you're struggling like me, both mentally and physically, I am so sorry.  You need to care for yourself, and the best way to do that is to stay close to God during your time of struggle.  He has meaning and purpose in all things, and every time we draw close to him during our struggles, He is so proud of us.  

He loves us so much.

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