Thanksgiving is a time to be grateful, but also a time that reminds me of loss in my life. Can one be thankful amidst loss? I believe we can, and should be thankful even in hard times.
Harder question - can one be thankful FOR loss?
It was Thanksgiving season when I experienced the loss of my first child.
It was Thanksgiving season when my family made a hard decision about moving to a new church due to some heartbreaking circumstances.
It was Thanksgiving season when my mom's health started to decline quickly due to bone marrow cancer that took her life.
Thanksgiving starts the holiday season, which is a yearly reminder of the broken relationships and brokenness in general in my family.
I can be thankful THROUGH all of these circumstances and memories. But can I be thankful FOR them? Yes. In Romans 8:28 God says that He works all things together for good. It is a promise that has held true in my life, and in yours even when you don't see it.
The loss of my first child ultimately led me to come to know Jesus. I was without hope when she died, and that began a search for answers that led me to salvation 7 years later. I am thankful.
Moving churches brought new friendships, support, encouragement and opportunities to serve as we learned to call a new church "home". I am thankful.
My mom's death was a difficult loss. Through that season, I learned much about God's sovereignty. He holds eternity in His hands, and He knows. I am thankful.
Every loss I have suffered as a mom has been an opportunity to learn much more about God's grace. Were it not for the grace He has extended to this undeserving sinner, I would not be able to extend it to my family. I am thankful.
We can be thankful for our losses, not because they make US stronger but because they reveal our weakness and need for Jesus. As we surrender our will and life to Him, we are transformed and made closer to His image.
Our losses are intended for our good, and for God's glory. They lead us to hope!
Are you thankful amidst and for your struggles this Thanksgiving?
“We also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame.” Romans 5:3–5