When life is complicated –
and it is…
When people are hurting -
and they are…
When questions overwhelm -
and they do…
All that’s left for us to do is this: GIVE THANKS.
I’ll admit, it seems counter-intuitive, this expressing of gratitude when all seems lost and we are tempted to despair over the state of our world and our own small lives.
Yes, things are a mess.
But to collapse in a heap would mean missing the everyday miracles God is performing all around us, the hopeful evidence that He has not left our sides, no matter how grim things appear. Choosing to give thanks calls to mind the ways that indeed, He is crafting our redemption and is worthy of all honor.
I find the following simple prayer of Scottish author William Barclay to be prescriptive and healing for “such a time as this”, a gentle reminder of how blessed we are in this one aspect: that we love and are loved.
I give you thanks, O God, for those who mean so much to me —
Those to whom I can go at any time.
Those with whom I can talk and keep nothing back,
knowing that they will not laugh at my dreams or
Those in whose presence it is easier to be good.
Those who by their warning have held me back from
mistakes I might have made.
Above all, I thank you for Jesus Christ, Lord of my heart
and Savior of my soul, in whose Name I offer this
With each line of this prayer, a face (sometimes more than one) comes to mind: someone who has been a gift to me in exactly the way described.
Even as I acknowledge there is much that needs to be healed – in me and in the world around me – I am overwhelmed by the generosity of God toward me through His gift of community . . . and ultimately, through the gift of His Son.
May you, too, be made aware of the immeasurable blessings you’ve been given and be moved to genuine gratitude this Thanksgiving.
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