Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Give Thanks!

Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good.
His love endures forever…
                                    Psalm 136:1 

     Sometimes when life knocks us down we reach into our closet of emotions and pull down the box labeled pity party. One by one we open the contents of the envelopes marked: Oh my! Why me? Why now? Why this? How long? How far? How could I have done that? Some grab it more quickly than others, but most have reached for it at least once.

     Perhaps satan set a snare for you, and you stepped into it. That innocent lunch became dinner and then dinner became something more and before you knew it... Maybe someone you love has a heart hurt that has driven him to the bottle. You want to help, but nothing is working. It could be that a devastating disease or loss of a loved one has you teetering on the brink of depression.

     Any one of life’s hurts and tragedies can drive us over the edge of our emotional stability. Many situations require medical treatment or professional counseling. There is no shame in seeking help. Other predicaments seem less lethal and we struggle to handle them on our own.

     I have found a good way to begin the emotional healing process is by giving thanks to our great God. You may think it strange to give thanks when you are in the pit. You may believe there is nothing for which to be thankful. Psalm 136 reminds us that God’s endless love never fails. I don’t know about you, but when I am in the midst of struggles or failure, I need to know that!

     When we look for reasons to be thankful, we begin focusing on the goodness of God and often discover that along with our attitude of gratitude comes weight loss—our heavy heart grows lighter. While thankfulness may not change the situation or circumstances around me, I have found that thankfulness changes me.

     When I begin to thank God, not for the situation but in the midst of the situation, I find that I am able to put away the envelopes of self-absorption and focus on my Heavenly Father’s love and mercy and goodness and grace.

     My God gives drink to the dry and thirsty soul. He gives meat to the emaciated spirit. He gives strength for today and hope for tomorrow. He removes the clouds of doubt and fear and causes the sun to shine again.

     He is God and He is good. His love endures forever. Give thanks!

©JP 2013

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