A MESSAGE FROM SARA:
So generally speaking, when I sit to write the blog post to go with the podcast, I listen to the podcast and try to connect that context with the blog context. And as I listen to everything that Monica, Amber, and I are talking about, I keep thinking it is so the truth! It really, really is. But man…it is so hard to live out that truth when there are things going on in your life. In the podcast this week we talk about how:
- Being thankful improves our attitude
- Being thankful gives us perspective
- Being thankful provides freedom
- Being thankful is a choice and a command
But as I sit to write today, I just feel like I need to share with you a few journeys going on in my life.
As I have shared with you all before I often write in my bed. And that is exactly where I am today but because for more than just writing. I am fighting a tremendous amount of leg pain and have been for the last three days. This pain is a deep pain — bone pain, an aching. And on a scale of 1-10 it is a 15. This comes on the coattails of a recovery of knee surgery, and though I am so, so thankful for how great the surgery went and how I am healing, I am so frustrated for this pain and want it to go away.
God, do you really want me to thank you for this pain?
And then we found out that someone very, very dear to me — dear to my family — has breast cancer.
We just finished watching my sweet little niece fight leukemia and praise Jesus that she is in remission — but right now, God, do you really want me to thank you for this cancer?
And so, I am faced with a dose of my own medicine on thankfulness. If I am being honest, I’m not at a place yet where I understand how to praise God for these things…especially with cancer.
Now listen, there is plenty that I can be thankful for, but to be thankful for everything…especially the bad stuff… is so, so hard. I will have to say that so far I am just Being in these things. I can get over the leg pain so much easier than I can the cancer.
So what do I do?
I am committed not to allow Satan to have the power over me. My perspective during this time — and in all times — is what will guide me. God’s promises are real and his commands for our protection.
I cannot allow my feelings to drive my actions.
Feelings can be deceiving and can take us to a pit that is absent of any goodness, and instead a place to cause bitterness, anger, frustration.
And my prayer for my dear friend that is now facing cancer is that God will give her amazing perspective and to know that God will never leave us or forsake us.
Barbara Epp says:
Later, while studying the first chapter of Romans I was struck by how important thanksgiving is to God. When I saw that lack of thanksgiving results in futile thinking and darkened hearts I realized that thanksgiving isn’t just a thoughtful thing we do when we feel like it. It is an attitude God has designed us for and intends for us to choose! It is vital to a healthy relationship with our Father! It is living in reality! It is choosing to believe that God’s promises and faithfulness are more real than our circumstances.
You know we talk about how the grass is green where you water it. But during tough times, it’s hard to remember to water your grass. And it’s hard to remember to water it with the truth and godly things that will nourish our souls. During the tough times you have to ask yourself are you watering your grass or are you just waiting for someone to water it for you?
I don’t have to love the cancer or the leg pain. But I have to believe the truth that all things work together for good to those that love the Lord…
“We are confident that God is able to orchestrate everything to work toward something good and beautiful when we love Him and accept His invitation to live according to His plan.” (Romans 8:28)
And that to everything there is purpose…
“For everything that happens in life—there is a season, a right time for everything under heaven.” (Ecc 3:1)
As for a dose of my own medicine, talking about being thankful is much easier than putting it into practice. I’m sure that I will be doing the practical applications over and over again during this time. And this won’t be the only time, because life is full of mountaintops and valleys.
But the choice is mine…be free or be in bondage. I choose freedom.
What will you choose?
Now it’s your turn!
Write a blog post on what it means to Be Thankful and link up to the blog hop below. Make sure to read the post before yours and leave a comment; we want to encourage each other and expose ourselves to new voices.
Make sure to grab the graphic below to put at the end of your post so others can link up and join, too!
Love you friend! Let’s commit to Being Thankful today.
(For more details on the heart behind our link-ups, click here.)