I must begin this article with a confession. I am writing it on the evening before I leave for my “vacation.” For that break…I am VERY thankful. So with that said…let me get this thing done. 🙂
Many people will gather with family and friends during this holiday to eat, make merry, and perhaps even watch some football on TV. What’s more, some may even give thanks. Let’s hope so.
Unfortunately, there are many people during this holiday that are feeling anything other than thankful. Perhaps there is loss of a love one since last years’ celebration. Perhaps others, as I heard in our consistory meeting Monday night, are dealing with the recent diagnosis of cancer. The fact is…there is pain and loss all around us. Spend anytime around others…you will hear it. There is SO MUCH suffering. Perhaps you may be experiencing it yourself.
If so…the last thing I want to do is make light of it. Your pain and loss is real. It is personal. It is truly hard. Sometimes we wish we were God so that we could wipe away pain and suffering—ours and others. And we sometimes wonder why He doesn’t always do just that. For that question or pondering…I have no answer. Nor do I think anyone does to our satisfaction.
But this one thing I do know…and I have learned it from personal experience…the more I do for others, the less I focus on my own self, my own pain, my own losses. No, they don’t always disappear like magic, but they do lessen…at least for a little while.
The Scriptures are full of witnesses to thanksgiving even in the midst of loss and suffering. The Apostle Paul comes to mind as he gave thanks so many times while sitting in the darkness of a prison. If only I could be that brave, that faithful, that “good” of a Christian.
I do hope you can find something to truly be thankful for this year. May I suggest at least being thankful for the great love that was shown to you by the Lord Jesus Christ. Now that is something to be thankful for.
May you all have a safe and enjoyable holiday. HAPPY THANKSGIVING!