Do you always feel like being thankful? I don’t. Sometimes life just stinks and I so wish that things were different, that I don’t feel thankful. This is a very self-focused and sinful attitude. One of those times for me was right after my best friend and husband, David, went to be with the Lord.
When there is tremendous blessing, such as a loving husband of 25 years, and that is taken away, there is tremendous loss. It isn’t wrong to grieve. It is natural and necessary and it takes times. Even with the best biblical perspective, the human heart is broken. But, I believe we must move through the grieving process and not let Satan or our natural tendencies prevail. I think at one point I was teetering on the border line.
I found myself in the pit of despair. I remember driving down the dark road alone feeling like I had hit rock bottom emotionally and was pretty close spiritually too. God seemed a million miles away. I felt desperate for relief.
I began to mentally dig deep through my vast mental library of past sermons, quotes, poems, memorized Scripture verses, etc., anything for help to escape what I was feeling. Although I couldn’t see or feel Him, God was there and helped me climb out of that pit. He helped me find the ladder of thanksgiving and praise.
I was relieved to finally get an answer to my problem, but honestly, I didn’t want to exert the energy to apply the solution. I didn’t feel like climbing. In some sick way, I wanted to wallow in my pity. It was easier to cry and be sad.
After a few minutes, I realized it would do no good to stay where I was. It’s not like it was a comfortable place to be. I hated it. So even though I was wrung out emotionally, I made the choice to push past my feelings and sing. Yes, I sang praises to God. It took a lot of effort at first and it wasn’t very loud. It didn’t sound good either, but I knew God didn’t care about that. He cared that I was being obedient to what He had shown me.
I didn’t feel much different at first and it felt awkward, but as I continued, I began to feel better. Then I chose to thank God for His provision in my life. I started counting my blessings. I realized I had been so busy feeling sorry for myself that I hadn’t thanked God for anything in several weeks. It’s no wonder I was depressed!
Gratitude is an attitude we deliberately choose in spite of how we feel. God has abundantly blessed most of us. Here are just a few reasons to thank God. For….
- living in still the greatest country on earth
- plenty of food
- a warm place to sleep
- people who love us
- a place to freely worship
- a Bible
- peaceful living
AND if Jesus is our Saviour, we have…
- the Holy Spirit who give us peace, guidance, and comfort
- a promise of eternal life with Jesus
- the knowledge that God loves us so much He sent His only son to die for us
- a home in heaven without pain, sickness, or separation
- the promise of being reunited with Christians who have gone on before us
- the promise that God will never leave or forsake us
- a tie that binds us to the hearts of other believers
- been forgiven!
As we enter this Thanksgiving season, may our prayer be..
“Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.” (Psalm 19:14)
Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving. (Colossians 4:2)
Keep looking up,