She was out bicycling one day with her eight-year-old granddaughter, She got a little wistful. "In ten years," she said to her daughter, "you'll want to be with your friends and you won't go walking, biking, and swimming with me like you do now." The daughter shrugged. "In ten years you'll be too old to do all those things anyway."
“always giving thanks for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God, even the Father; and be subject to one another in the fear of Christ.” Ephesians 5:20-21
Always giving thanks means that we should be thankful right now, even when it’s difficult, because we have today. Last week, Iglesia Reinos De Dios, our former Mission, fed some of the volunteers that helped them fix problems with their new building last year. One of their members, Margarita Serna, told everyone that I “kicked them out” of the house that had been their church for so many years. She said that before and everyone laughed, but not everyone knew that she was joking last week. Two years ago, when I asked them what they wanted, it touched my heart when Pastor Guzman answered, probably the same thing you would want, our own building. That’s when I decided to kick them out! No, that’s when the Lord put it on my heart to help them get moving. When I asked them to start paying their utilities, to say they became a little anxious would be an understatement. They didn’t know me. They didn’t know if they could trust me: was I trying to get rid of them or really trying to help them get a building? (We saved their utility payments and gave it back to them to purchase and improve their building). It’s hard to give thanks when pressure is being applied. It’s difficult to give thanks when our faith is being tested. Oh, it’s easy to give thanks when you’re looking back at what God has done, but giving thanks in and for all situations is a test of our faith. It’s not being thankful for difficult circumstances, but thankful for our Heavenly Father’s faithful presence and help in all of our circumstances.
This week, we celebrate Thanksgiving and we have so much for which to be thankful. So, thank you, Father, for holding our hands during difficult days and carrying us when we are paralyzed by fear or heartache. Thank you for good people that lift us up and love us unconditionally. Thank you for little things that turn out to be huge, I mean really huge. And thank you for the tough days, the challenges and even the trials because Your “grace is sufficient” and your “power is perfected in weakness.” (II Cor. 12:9).