Oh, So, Thankful

Pumpkin pie, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki...

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Thanksgiving. It’s the day of the year that we eat turkey and cranberries and pumpkin pie. Families and friends congregate, and people celebrate and maybe even go to church. But what is it that they are celebrating? Who are they giving thanks to?

This thought first struck me last Thanksgiving, when, overcome with loss and grief, I wondered if I actually had anything to be thankful for or if the God that I professed to believe in should really be thanked. I’d been a Christian all my life but this time last year, I wasn’t so sure. I was sadder than I’d ever been yet I was supposed to enjoy turkey dinner and make pumpkin pie and give thanks like always because it was thanksgiving. And so I did all of these things–but I didn’t taste the turkey, I hated the pie, and I thanked God for taking from me what, in actuality, I wanted back.

This year, however, I can’t stop thanking God. Yes, I’ve experienced sorrow, bad days, and lots of tears but I’ve also tasted joy, contentment, and laughter. In one year, I have experienced more mercy and grace than I ever imagined was possible. Through grief, I was given joy, and through tears I learned to smile. God has given me everything.

So this Thanksgiving, I am not bitter or confused but simply and undoubtably thankful. I know that my God is a faithful God and that His gifts are indeed wonderful. I understand that He does work all things together for the good of those who love Him. I realize what it is to be content.

This year, my list overflows with gifts that I actually am grateful for. There is good food like turkey and spicy beans and pumpkin pie with whipping cream. New friendships that I’ve made and others that I’ve developed. Family members that I have grown to love more. Acceptance and gratefulness for the memory of what once was. Skype conversations and youth group events and church and tea with a very dear friend. Parts in plays and good books. No need for make-up, and growth through what once hurt me. I have happiness, peace, and joy. I am content and oh, so, thankful.

I know what it is to be in need and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.

Phillipians 4:12

Happy (Canadian) Thanksgiving!!!

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4 thoughts on “Oh, So, Thankful

  1. AH! First off, this post made me hungry. Thanksgiving here in the USA is next month and I just want it to be here already. 😦 Sigh! Hope you had a good time, though.

    Your list of things that you are grateful for is wonderful and reminds me a lot of my own growth over the past year. I’ll never forget the funny things that have happened to me, the experiences I’ve had, the gifts from God. Even though this has spiritually been my best year yet–and I think I gave my mom a mini-heart attack last night when I reflected that “I think I’ve grown closer to Jesus and farther from my religion”–I had a lot of sorrow over the past year, a lot of scary stuff, some brushes with death…general despair. But, like you, God has given me SO much to be thankful for!

    • Whoops! Sorry! I hope you can last until then! 🙂

      That’s interesting that you said that this has spiritually been your best year, despite challenges. I have found the same thing myself. I had the hardest thing in my life so far happen last year but I think it has actually been my best year yet. Not only did I grow closer to God, but through realizing sadness I grew happier. With this in mind, I know that this year can be even better!

  2. This post really made me think about my current situation. I’ve for the most part been joyful for what God is doing in my life, but have I thanked Him? Thank you for helping me to remember that I need to give thanks to God. 🙂

    I hope you had a great thanksgiving with lots of food, laughs, family and friends, but most of all the overflowing love for our Abba.

    • Thanking God can be hard — especially when you have major troubles going on — but it definitely helps. However, that is not to say that you should thank Him for those bad things. Rather, we should thank Him for the good that He has done in our lives…like how He turns the bad to good. 🙂

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