God is able to do more abundantly than we can ask or think – but do we trust Him enough to be grateful even when things don’t go according to our plans?
Thankful to God
For most people, it’s easy to be thankful to God when things are going well. When we are healthy, feel secure in our friendships and family, and have money in the bank and food on the table, being thankful comes naturally.
But when we are sick, when friends or family disappoint us, and when we struggle to make ends meet, it can be a struggle to come to God in a spirit of thanksgiving.
We must remember that God takes us as we are and meets us where we are. That is part of the staggering goodness of our God. And Ephesians 3:20 reminds us that God is able to do far more than we can ask or even think. He is able to turn our trials into triumphs, our sickness into joy, and our broken relationships into deeper communion with Him.
With all that Bill and our family have been through this past year, we could be tempted to wonder what God is up to because He hasn’t done things the way we think He should have! But that would be short-sighted, because our wondrous God IS able to do more than we could possibly think, and that includes taking our trials and sufferings and using them for good.
Friend, I know it’s easier to rest in gratitude to God when the times of trials and tribulation are over. However, so many of our friends and family are suffering right now – and it’s important that we continue to express our gratitude to God while we suffer with them.
God is good – all the time. All the time – God is good.
Sometimes we just need to let go of our quest for control and allow God to work in and through us. And we can be grateful to Him, even when we don’t feel like it. It’s not that we should ignore or brush off suffering and trials. In fact, a vital role of the church is to comfort, mourn, love, and support each when hard times come – and they do come. But for the Christian, times of difficulty can also be times of gratitude. If we thank God for allowing us to face challenges, we recognize and honor the fact that God works through everything – and I mean everything! – as He lovingly pursues us and sanctifies us to be more like His Son.
To do that shows that we trust Him in all circumstances and are willing and eager for Him to guide and direct us, even when it’s uncomfortable.
Join me in thanking God for His blessings this year. They may not have come in the form we wanted or expected, but it doesn’t make Him any less good!
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