Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
1 Thess. 5:16-18
November 24, 2011
Give thanks to God in all circumstances? Really? I mean does God really want us to thank Him for cancer or death? What about financial worries or loss of jobs? Does God want us to thank Him for marital fights and divorce? OF COURSE NOT! Then what does it mean to thank God in all circumstances? We can thank God for all circumstances because we know God is with us in all circumstances. I will explain:
Being a full time caregiver is a very hard job. I love Gary and I do care for him out of that love, but this is not an easy job. On top of caring for Gary, I care for our house and all that goes on with that both inside and outside. I care for our cars and make sure they are tuned and the tires are full and the batteries are good and they are insured. I care for the animals in the house, Mikko our cat, Sammi our dog and now our two fish, Thor and Spartacus. (Guess who named them.) I care for all our meals and all our shopping. I do all the chores and I get up first and go to bed last. I make sure all the doors are locked and everyone is tucked in. I am on call in the middle of the night when Gary wakes up confused and Sammi needs to go out. Me, it is just me and I have no one else to fall back on, no one in this house who I can lean on. I am not asking any of you to feel sorry for me. I just want to put it out there so you know when I say my life is hard, you know it is hard. Oh and before I forget, on top of all of that there is weekly therapy and my school. Tired has taken on a whole new meaning for me.
This new life of mine wore me down very quickly and got me into a very bad habit. The bad habit was the way I would end my day. I would lay in bed and just give God my full day’s worth of complaints. I didn’t get much sleep and I was getting grumpy. I was always quick with my attitude but my anger takes some time. However, I noticed that my anger came a lot quicker and I did not like the person I was becoming. Then I had my AHA moment. (Thank you, Larry for sharing this with me.) What is an AHA moment? Well AHA is the acronym for A=Awareness, H=Honesty and A=Action, and this is how it worked.
I became Aware of what I was doing at night-time. Once I was aware of this I Honestly came before God and confessed this to Him. I do not want to be a grumpy woman. I told God that I wanted to change and I prayed for His help. Then I took Action, I got myself a little book and nightly I started to record 3-5 things that I could thank God for. I could do this because I realized that in this journey I’m in, it does not matter what circumstance I am in or what troubled road I walk. God is with me in all circumstances. He certainly does not want me to say thank You for Gary’s brain injury. He does like to hear me say, “Thank You for being with me and helping me take care of Gary.”
Once I started to thank God, I began to see all the wonderful ways in which God was helping me. My eyes opened up and I saw with my eternal vision that which was hidden among the anger. God is there, God is always there, and nothing can take God away from me. He chose me to be His and I am. So in every situation I find myself in, no matter the circumstance, I can thank God. This new me can now let go of anger and be filled with joy. Joy because every day Gary does improve. Joy because even if Gary never recovers fully, God is helping me and it is Him upon which I lean.
Today is Thanksgiving and each day this month I have seen a lot of people update their Facebook statuses with a post of what they are thankful for. Well, here is a challenge for you. How about getting yourself a little notebook or even journal on the computer, and just start thanking God for 3-5 things each night before you go to bed. Do this every night from now to Christmas and see if this makes your holiday even happier. It is worth the try.
Happy Thanksgiving, and I will end with what I am thankful for this day.
- I am thankful that God gives me all of you so that I can share what I learn, and I hope to encourage and let you know how much you are loved.
- I am thankful that God saved Gary and allows me to care for him.
- I am thankful for my children who are amazing.
- I am thankful for my grandchildren who I adore.
- I am thankful for our families and friends who support us and love us.
- I am thankful that God allows me to make mistakes and then do over every day.
- I am thankful for all of you. I know I said this at first, but I am so thankful for you that it is worth repeating.