Dear Loved Ones,
Whether you find yourself in a time of abundant blessing or in a time of deep need, my prayer for you this Thanksgiving is that you will know of God’s unfailing, faithful love for you. I am praying for those of you whom I know and those of whom I do not. God is not limited by whether I have ever met you – He can choose to use my prayers for you, if He desires, and so I pray.
Many people will proclaim with great optimism this Thanksgiving, “I am so blessed!” However, perhaps this weekend, you are struggling to feel blessed. Perhaps you have lost your job, lost your family or been betrayed. Maybe you are sick, weary, worn down or wandering. Maybe you are lonely, fearing, abused, or hopeless.
Although it is paramount that we look for the ways that we are blessed, my concern is that we can easily look upon these things admiringly and gradually the focus becomes on ourselves and what we “have,” rather than on Who God is.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 says, “ … give thanks IN all circumstances.” It is a challenge, I must confess. God does not say that we need to be thankful FOR all circumstances, but we can be thankful IN them --IN all pain, IN all loneliness, IN all poverty, IN all grief. We can be thankful in it for what God is doing in us, through us, and especially, we can be thankful for Him.
We can be thankful for God’s faithfulness, for His quiet love and for His joy, despite pain. We can be thankful for the wisdom and insight that He gives those who love Him, for His truth and for the discernment that He gives, allowing us the ability to drown out what a multitude of people say to only hear His voice. We can be thankful that He is Safe and in control and a Refuge that we can run to. We can be thankful that He is always present, available, and will never leave us or turn His back on us. There are more than a million things that we can be thankful for about God.
Look in to the light of His face, that shines even brighter in the darkness, and give thanks to the Lord for Who He is. Thank the Lord FOR the blessings He has bestowed upon you, however large or small they may be, but do not miss giving thanks to God IN all circumstances. And, do not forget to "... give thanks to the Lord for His unfailing love" (Psalm 107:8). What a relief and a reassurance that no matter whether we find ourselves in times of “blessing” or in “pain,” God and His love will never change.
In His Faithful Grip,