My husband and I were sitting with a young friend during the week telling her about an experience we had in 2006 while looking for a church to attend (see this post). The sermon had not been a great experience, but my husband reminded me that the singing worship had been great. For obvious reasons, I flippantly commented, "In hindsight, maybe we should have just stayed there."
The friend, who is like a daughter to us, look slightly shocked and said, "But then you would't have met me!" (We met this precious girl as a direct result of our involvement in the church I've blogged about here.)
It was one of those moments when you see again, with sudden clarity, that even in the darkest times there are rays of redeeming sunshine which break through the pain.
I am reminded again of the goodness of God. It doesn't cancel out the sin and brokenness of our experience, but it reveals the gems concealed in the dirt, but just waiting for us to recognise.
And I am grateful!