When It's Hard to Be Thankful


Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. - Philippians 4:6-7

With Thanksgiving just days away, we’re bombarded with reminders of all the ways we should be thankful. Well, that along with all the money we should be spending with Christmas being only 32 days away. But that’s a whole different conversation for another time.

Personally, I have many reasons to be thankful. But what about you? If I could, I would transport the two of us to a quaint and secluded coffee shop with the snap of my fingers. I’d lean in and I’d listen to YOUR story. I want to know what season you’re in.

There are some of you reading this that are struggling. You may be in a place where it’s not easy for you to focus on what you’re thankful for. You may be angry, confused, devastated, alone, or hurting. Maybe you’re all of those things. It’s okay that you’re not okay.

For whatever reason, you decided to click today’s devotional and read it. I prayed specifically for you before I wrote any of what you’re reading. I prayed for you because you matter. What you’re going through matters. And, even though we don’t know each other, I’m thankful for you. I’m thankful for you, because God created you, His precious daughter, for a specific purpose.

Whatever you’re going through, go through it. Don’t let yourself linger there too long, but don’t hold any of it back either. Let it all out, girl.

If you’re angry, be angry. Curl up in a ball and cry your eyes out. Scream into your pillow. Talk to God in your pain. Talk to Him in your despair. He can handle anything you throw at Him. I know, because I’ve thrown an awful lot at Him, and He’s never walked out of my life. I also know because of what Psalm 34:4-8 (MSG) tells us. Run to God. All of the weight you’re carrying, He wants it and is waiting for you to come to Him and release it. God doesn’t want you to stay in your broken situation. He wants to meet you in that place and help you overcome this season. He wants to restore you and be in community with you.

This Thanksgiving season, no matter what you’re feeling, I pray you know just how loved and special you are. You will survive this. God is on your side and will never abandon you. Keep going. And keep talking to God. Little by little, you will begin to see His goodness woven throughout every area of your life. And, when you do, you’ll be bursting with so much thankfulness you won’t be able to hold any of it back.

Reflection

1. What weight are you carrying that you can release to God? What’s holding back your thanksgiving?

2. When was the last time you were completely transparent with God about everything that you’re feeling and going through? What has kept you from going to Him?

Prayer

Father God, thank You for Your perfect love. Thank You for being constant in my life and meeting me more than halfway. You are my haven. Lord, help me to seek You and see Your goodness in my life even when I feel overwhelmed by emotions and the weight of my circumstances. I know that in You I am made new. Adjust my heart so that I may receive Your joy and reflect Your light to those around me. Thank you. It is in Your mighty name I pray, Amen.

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