First-world Problems

Today has not been the greatest day I’ve ever had, although it seemed all right at first. The sun was shining. The trash man came. I was even running on time to work. Yay! Good start so far, right?

When I arrive at work though I suddenly realize I didn’t bring a work shirt and since I work retail I can’t go without. I run in and tell my manager my dilemma. I live only about ten minutes away so I’m graciously allowed to return home to grab one. Phew!

Not wasting any time I drive home and quickly grab a shirt and am about to leave again when my wife prompts me for a kiss. Oops, almost forgot. Back out the door and to work making a quick but safe return. No worries.

Oh no, not so! I reach over to grab the shirt and there’s STILL no shirt! What?! How…?! Ugh. So one more round trip and this time I took no chances and put my shirt on.
I finally manage to arrive back at work only losing 45 minutes of pay.

Oh, well. First world problems right?

This was indeed my morning this morning. This, however, is NOT an example of what the phrase “first-world problem” means. Perhaps it does to some, but let me tell you what that phrase is truly about.

This is my gorgeous wife! How she fell for me, I’ll never understand but I am blessed beyond measure with her. I have never loved another so deeply so this is very difficult to write.

This afternoon at work, about an hour before my shift ended, I get an ominous text about news we need to discuss. Yeah, there is no way I’m waiting another hour to find out what THIS is about, especially after the series of rather serious testing the doctors had run recently.

I leave work early to run home again, safely but not wasting a single second. The news waiting at home is indeed sad and terrifying. Essentially, we learned that our time here together may be much shorter than we had originally anticipated.

Now THIS, this is an example of a first world problem! Why? What do you mean?

Well, as you can imagine, we are scared and rightfully so, of this looming tempest filling our horizon, but we have put our hope and trust in God our Great Captain in spite of our anxiousness. We will weather this finite storm with Him with as much grace as we’re able and spend our finite time here on this finite earth trusting in our infinite God.

Because all of our faith and hope rests upon Jesus, whether we have two years or ten years or another fifty, we will choose joy in this circumstance. Jesus promised that this “first world” is temporary and not the end for us.

Whether God heals my wife with a transformative miracle or we sail right into the face of the storm together, we have this underlying sense of peace. We know the eternal world that’s waiting for us doesn’t have these “first-world problems” of pain, sickness and death and the suffering and sorrows that accompany them.

While my purpose in writing this isn’t necessarily to pitch Jesus, I also can’t help but to say that if you put your faith and hope in Him then you too can know this peace that surpasses circumstance and comprehension. When you walk with Him then all of these trials, are merely temporary, first-world problems.

“…and this too shall pass.”

So the next time you come across the phrase “first-world problems,” remember that this is what it truly means.




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