The snow and ice this past week disrupted my life as I know it. I couldn’t go to work; I couldn’t run errands; I couldn’t go to church. The daily grind and my routine of dealing with it had been thrown off kilter. The easiest thing for me to do would have been to whine about how I was stranded at home or complain about the frustrations wrought by the weather. Indeed, there were times I found myself fretting over finances due to the fact that I don’t get paid if I don’t go to work.
However, I decided to be thankful instead. I chose to be thankful that I was getting a break from the exhaustive daily grind. I chose to enjoy the extra, much-needed time with my son and to try to turn those moments into fond memories. I released myself from the self-imposed demands of being productive and allowed myself to rest in my Father’s arms and reflect on His goodness, His faithfulness, and His sovereignty.
We all tend to get accustomed to living out life like it’s a steady flow; then when the disruptions occur (and they always do), we see only the negative, unpleasant effects. This is typical human reaction, however the problem with that is we miss noticing the blessings. Being thankful and trying to find the silver lining in “bad” times does not come easy for most of us, but it’s an attitude and habit that we are all capable of choosing.
I’d like to leave you with a story from the book, “The Hiding Place” (which if you have never read, I encourage you to do so). It is a true story of the Ten Boom family during the German occupation of Holland. Corrie Ten Boom and her family are arrested and sent from one German prison camp to another. The conditions are deplorable and worsen with each prison. While in one prison, Corrie and her sister, Betsie, are fighting off discouragement and trying to be “thankful in all circumstances.” They began to pray and thank God for everything, including the fleas that infested their barracks. Corrie doubts they should be thankful for the fleas, but eventually finds out that it is the fleas that keep the guards out of their barracks, allowing them to have prayer and Bible studies with their fellow prisoners.
So choose to be thankful. Find something to be grateful for in every circumstance, even if it doesn’t seem like there is anything for which to be grateful.
“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Philippians 4:6