A farmer had one old horse that he used for tilling his fields. One day the horse escaped into the hills and when all the farmer’s neighbors heard about it, they sympathized with the old man over his bad luck. “Bad luck? Good luck? Who knows?” said the farmer.
A week later, the horse returned with a herd of wild horses from the hills and this time the neighbors congratulated the farmer on his good luck. “Good luck? Bad luck? Who knows?” said the farmer.
Then, when the farmer’s son was attempting to tame one of the wild horses, he fell off its back and broke his leg. Everyone agreed that this was very bad luck. Not the farmer, who replied, “Bad Luck? Good luck? Who knows?”
Some weeks later, the army marched into the village and forced every able-bodied young man to go fight in a bloody war. When they saw that the farmer’s son had a broken leg, they let him stay. Everyone was very happy at the farmer’s good luck.
“Good luck? Bad luck? Who knows?”
Life is a lot like that. Sometimes it seems like things are going well, and at other times, things seem to be going badly. And we let those things dictate our feelings and our outlook on life. When things are going well, we’re happy and we think God is with us. If they are going badly, we get discouraged and think that God must have abandoned us. We end up being tossed around by our circumstances.
But the apostle Paul wrote in Philippians 4 that he had learned to be content, even happy, in all circumstances. He was happy when things were bad (he was in jail at the time), and he was happy when things were going good as well.
That’s the great thing about being part of God’s family. We really don’t have to worry in our circumstances, because no matter what, we have hope in Christ. “We know that in everything, God works for the good of those who love him (Romans 8:28).