When it’s Hard to be Thankful

when it's hardThanksgiving 2013. It seems like it wasn’t too long ago we were gathering at our friends’ home for a day of fun, food, and football in 2012. But here we are, Thanksgiving 2013.

I wouldn’t be honest if I didn’t say this has been one of the hardest years to have an attitude of thankfulness. There’s been plenty of life events and circumstances that have brought me to my knees in tears and questions. This year we lost 4 referrals during our adoption process. We miscarried a child. We lost a grandparent. Fundraising for our adoption was much harder and emotional than I expected. And our adoption process turned from a hopeful 12-14 month endeavor into a 20-?? month process.

My heart is weary this year.

“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

This passage rang in my ear many times over the past few weeks. Paul says to give thanks IN all circumstances, not FOR all circumstances. I could play the “if this then that” game of what this year could have looked like or because of certain hard things other good things wouldn’t have happened, but I don’t think God’s asking me to do that. He is asking me to thank Him for walking me through each of those hurts. He is asking me to thank him for each of the joys He gave us this year. He wants me to keep my eyes and heart on Him, the author and perfecter of my faith.

I don’t want to forget the hurts this year, because it’s been out of those trials and pain when I have seen and felt God most clearly. His hand was ever present this year, even when nothing else made sense.

“Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail and the fields yield no food, the flock be cut off from the fold and there be no herd in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will take joy in the God of my salvation. God, the Lord, is my strength; he makes my feet like the deer’s; he makes me tread on my high places.” Habakkuk 3:17-19

Even though my heart is worn and weary this year, when I look to the good gifts that God has given me, I can rejoice.

I have hope IN Jesus. I have JOY in my salvation. I can take COMFORT that God will never leave or forget about me. I can look to the GRACE that I am given each day to live my life in Christ.

Even in the trials, there is so much to be thankful for…



  1. […] I shared that sometimes it can be very hard to be thankful when life’s circumstances are challenging or not as you expected. But one thing I have […]

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