Sure. I want to live a life that is grateful. I want to dwell on the good. And I definitely prefer to camp in the “out of the woods” zone.
But sometimes life is just so hard.
I talked with a woman at church today that wept over a friend’s struggling marriage.
My nephew is undergoing surgery right now to repair a broken jaw.
I have relatives facing cancer, and Alzheimer’s, and loss.
And I never, ever, want to be flippant about another’s pain or offer platitudes that mean nothing.
It’s easy to be thankful when things are “swimming along nicely”, isn’t it?
But sometimes we feel like we’re drowning…
Often it is in the struggle that we discover the true depth of our gratitude. . .
and true compassion should increase our own thankfulness, shouldn’t it?
GRATEFUL is defined [dictionary.com] as “
THANKFUL is defined [dictionary.com] as “f
When I stop to count the myriad of ways that God has blessed me, I am completely overwhelmed with gratitude– sometimes to the point of feeling guilty…
…until the next event arrives and I realize that none of us are immune. There will always be, this side of heaven, those things that threaten to invade our heart with fear and worry–chasing out the fleeting confidence that comes from ease. But even in those most difficult moments we can choose to focus on what is good and right–and look to God for truth in the midst of our situation. His offer of joy and love and peace and hope is not a blank promise that “all will be well” in our circumstances,
But that all will be well with our SOUL.
When our glance is on our situation, but our gaze is on the Savior, our vision becomes impeccably clear: HE IS WORTHY.
HE is worthy.
He is WORTHY of praise and honor and glory–because of WHO HE IS–not just because of what He’s done for us.
This idea of Thanksgiving is a good one, but when the turkey is gone, so will our thankfulness be if we’re not careful. Our appetite has to be for more than this world offers: Momentary Thankfulness.
I want Lifelong Gratitude.
Gratitude that comes from a deep, abiding trust in the God who made me and sacrificed Himself for me–when I deserved nothing. The God who gives meaning and purpose and peace. The One who IS WORTHY. Do I need to say it again? HE IS WORTHY of every.single.ounce of praise our heart can produce. Praise that comes out of pain. Despite the pain. Or maybe because of relief from pain. He deserves no less.
“Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable—if there is any moral excellence and if there is any praise—dwell on these things.” Philippians 4:8
THANKSGIVING is more than a holiday with turkey and trimmings–it is a gentle reminder that we are BLESSED. We have the most basic of necessities and more. God has given us life and provided opportunity for new life. He gives abundant life–full of love, joy and peace in the midst of life’s most difficult trials. His offer of eternal life is to “whosoever will come”.
“And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. The one who has the Son has life. The one who doesn’t have the Son of God does not have life. I have written these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.” I John 5:11-13
In this prerequisite holiday to the birthday of The Son, I pray that this momentary reminder to be thankful will morph this heart into a GRATEFUL HEART.
One that is deeply appreciative of His kindness.