Thanksgiving is a bit like Christmas, and I’m not just talking about all the food. I mean, at Christmas if you are surrounded by your family, go to a Christmas party, get to put up a tree, and give and receive presents it is amazing!
‘The most wonderful time of the year!’
But what if you don’t have all that? If you struggle financially or have family troubles (like many people do), it can be a lonely time of year and not very wonderful at all.
The reason thanksgiving is similar is because it also has two sides. All the people winning at life are saying how thankful they are for all the good that they have but what about if you’re facing a situation so tough that you don’t really feel like being thankful for anything? Other people’s thankfulness only highlights your current troubles and you might feel as though you’re becoming resentful of happiness around you.
When we are facing darkness in our lives it is hard to shake it and see the good side, even if only for a day! But there is some really good news…
The bible doesn’t say be thankful FOR all things, it says be thankful IN all things [1 Thessalonians 5:18]. You don’t have to be thankful for the bad things going on in your life, but you can be thankful IN them!
So what does that mean?
It means we don’t have to cover up what we are struggling with because we ‘should be grateful’ but we can be real with God. We can tell God everything we think or feel, and we can be thankful that he hears us, that he has a plan, and through our situation he is shaping us and building us for what is coming in our future.
The bible never promised us an easy life, and when we can finally learn to be thankful in the bad just as much as we are thankful in the good, that is true thankfulness. The kind of thankfulness that can’t be shaken and can’t be faked!
So whether you are having the best week of your life or the worst, be thankful IN that circumstance because God is still God and he has great plans for you [Jeremiah 29:11].