There is always a reason to be thankful | Faith | The Press and Standard

by | July 30, 2017 5:00 am

Last Updated: July 26, 2017 at 11:22 am

There are some trying times that we experience in life, and we wonder and ask, “Lord, why me?” We wallow in our self-pity and fall completely apart, often uttering, “Life is not fair!” Some of us go as far as to say, “Why is God allowing this to happen to me if He is a God of love?”
However, we must remember that no matter what we are going through in life that may be so difficult, God is still in charge, and there is always a reason to be thankful.
When someone would pass away in our family when I was a young girl, I would hear my maternal grandmother say, “It’s hard, but it’s fair.” In awe I would say to myself, “How can it be fair?”
Philippians 4:4-7 (ESV) affirms, “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Therefore, no matter what adversity comes your way, there is no need to complain; be thankful and give it to God. If you feel that “your basket” is overloaded, just stop and take a look at someone else’s. Your thoughts might just change.
On last Wednesday evening I got a call that shattered my heart in pieces: I was told that my mother, Rev. Dr. Evelyn Gelzer Stevens, had transitioned. My mind could not process the thought, and my heart could not receive it.
Although my mother had been ill, I just knew she was coming back around and was getting better, based on what I had seen from my visits with her from the previous Saturday through that Tuesday.
However, I have to accept the fact that God had bigger and better plans for her.
Even though my heart is heavy with grief, there is joy in knowing that my mother has gone on to a better place and will never have to worry about sickness or the troubles of this world any more.
Momma lived a wonderful life, and God gave her to us 10 years beyond the 70 that the Word promises. Further, she died in Christ, a faithful woman of God. Consequently, amidst the grief and pain in our hearts, there is a reason for my family and me to be thankful.
Whenever you get the notion to complain about all of your tough times again and feel that life is not treating you fairly, ponder the thoughts of this illustration, “Even Though…”
• Even though I clutch my blanket and growl when the alarm rings, thank you, Lord, that I can hear. There are many who are deaf.
• Even though I keep my eyes closed against the morning light as long as possible, thank you, Lord, that I can see. Many are blind.
• Even though I huddle in my bed and put off rising, thank you Lord, that I have the strength to rise. There are many who are bedridden.
• Even though the first hour of my day is hectic, when socks are lost, toast is burned, tempers are short, and my children are so loud, thank you, Lord, for my family. There are many who are lonely.
• Even though our breakfast table never looks like the pictures in magazines, and the menu is at times unbalanced, thank you, Lord, for the food we have. There are many who are hungry.
• Even though the routine of my job is often monotonous, thank you, Lord, for the opportunity to work. There are many who have no job.
• Even though I grumble and bemoan my fate from day to day and wish my circumstances were not so modest, thank you, Lord, for life.
Have a wonderfully blessed week, and never leave home without Him!

(Anna Bright is a minister and educator in Walterboro. She can be reached at abrightcolumn@lowcountry.com)

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