Today was not the birthday I had planned. Pain from the herniated disc in my back has been intense and I was forced to stop and rest. And I recognized that I am more aware of blessings when I’m stopped than when I’m hurrying through my own agenda. Although my day started with physical pain it also started with the sweetest birthday hug from my daughter, a yummy breakfast brought to me by my husband, and has been rounded out with flowers, a cake, balloons, gifts, and dinner not prepared by me. Oh, and I’m here to celebrate another year of life!! Today is the day God had planned for me and His plans are always better than mine. Life can be painful and messy and sometimes we have to search hard to see the blessings. Today I am grateful that the blessings far outweighed the pain.