My mom used to say there is always something you can be thankful for – she was right. My list is endless. But so are the things that get in the way. There are a million reasons not to be grateful and a million more to be speechless with gratitude – so we need to decide which lens to choose to view life. Our chronic ungratefulness mostly has to do with our focus more than our circumstances.
I know, we’re supposed to be in thankful-mode – it’s November, after all. And so we must consider all the ways we’ve been blessed in our families, our health, and our freedoms (not just because the Phillies are doing well). It’s important to value the goodness of God in our lives, but giving thanks can be hard when families are broken or when our health and freedoms fade.
As I rewind life, I think of how our family has faced some of the greatest challenges strangely enough just around this time of year. It was right in the middle of the “thankful season” when my husband and three sons were fighting to live for different reasons. And it didn’t make sense . . .
When things don’t make sense God tells me in His word over 58 times to give thanks and a few times it even says in all things so it must be possible. And thanks always precedes the miracle.
I can think of the mega-several times when my only prayer was simply “help me trust you Lord, just for the next hour” and it brought me through the next twenty-four. When we can’t necessarily give thanks, we can offer the sacrifice of trust. And He always earns our trust . . .
Rejoice always ~ Pray without ceasing ~ Give thanks in all circumstances. For this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you . . . First Thessalonians five-eighteen.
So I’m like you, I find it a struggle in ALL things — but then I look deeper to find how possible it is IN all things. That’s where Jesus is – in the middle, bringing gold and good out of the thick of it. When unwelcome and traumatic places try to rob you of the precious gift of thankfulness and joy, trick your soul that “it is well” and own it. Own the wellness. The enemy hates it.
An offering of trust perseveres through the pain and sees the will of God in the middle.
Notice on purpose today and in the coming days leading up to the “day of” thanks to appreciate the ways we see a merciful God who is IN the ALL. The spilling God who pours out abundance in the not enough.
I understand that we all need a little expectation – so, if you’re struggling too, may we together expect abundance to gather the gratitude and spill it on the table for our loved ones to have the same hope.
Because Mom was right – there is “always” something to be thankful for.
I love the Lord because he heard my voice and my pleas for mercy. Because He inclined His ear to me therefore, I will call on Him as long as I live. Psalm 116