Wednesday, October 15, 2014

A Thing About Gratitude

As of today, there has been 15 days in the month of October this year. Here is a list of trials I faced in the last 15 days:

  • Laptop breaks
  • Refrigerator stops working
  • Dryer stops working
  • Laptop isn't being covered under warranty
  • Miscommunication leads to laptop not being delivered
  • Dentist fees that should be covered weren't
All of these things are minor setbacks and frustrations toward a smooth day-to-day function. However, if we add these on to a major trial, such as a family member being admitted into hospice and given only a few weeks to live, these minor setbacks can become very trying. 

After being on the phone for 30 minutes with an automated customer service and getting no where, I ended up in tears of frustration. Although I had every excuse to be rude to the actual person who finally picked up the phone after a failed attempt with the automated services, they weren't the person to blame. They are only doing what they have been trained to do and it is unfair to expect something more from them--especially when they could probably do nothing more than what they have already tried and most importantly, they have no idea what other hardships I'm dealing with. 

However, I could expect more from the Lord. I could have a no-hold, no "I'm sorry, I can't do anything else" phrase, and no automated machine to speak with God. I can be reassured that I am heard, understood and taken care of through Christ. Because of God, I can see amazing neighbors who allowed us to use their fridge space so we didn't have to throw away a whole carton of eggs, we saw how well we were being taken care of by our landlords, we were able to see beautiful sunsets, receive free gift cards and have fees waived. But most importantly, we were able to see our families united in faith--aiding us each with peace, comfort and love from each other and from God. 

I still have much to learn about showing gratitude and becoming more consistent and perfect in this trait; however, I have confidence that if I take the time to try, I can find gratitude towards Christ. 

In Psalms 100, we read: 

1 Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.

 2 Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing.

 3 Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

 4 Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.

 5 For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

I pray for you. The more hardships I face in this life, the more I understand that you do too. I may not understand what you are facing or begin to fathom how that is affecting you, but  I do understand that you are going through something--and that something is very hard. I also know that God can understand what you are going through and how it is affecting you, because He has been there. He has gone through everything you face already and He has made it. He suffered and came out victorious for you. Give up your burdens and trust in Him to heal and comfort you. Trust in Him so that you may find peace in this life and be embraced in His unconditional love for you. I can't promise that He will take away these burdens. But I can promise you that you can find happiness, joy, peace and comfort here on Earth and forever in the Eternities if you give yourself to Him with all your might, mind and strength. May God be with you. And may you always have enough: enough to make it through one more day, enough to fold the laundry one more time, enough to kiss your spouse and love them one more day, enough to praise God one more time. 


*Please share a time in the comments below on how God has given you strength to overcome a hardship you have faced. Through your experience, I know it will bless someone who is facing those challenges you have already faced by giving them hope, faith and understanding. 

4 comments:

  1. Thank you for your thoughts. It reminds me of a time when my husband was diagnosed with cancer - the same type that had taken a friend and fellow Firefighter's life just a year before. It was a scary time. I prayed for help and found peace. I knew that things would be alright, whatever God had in store for us. With the peace, I was able to see the miracles and tender mercies: An ER nurse who was assigned to the room my husband was in who had gone through the same cancer. He understood exactly how my husband felt and reassured him that things would be alright, a loving Bishop who rushed to our side to give comfort and aid, cancer doctors expertly trained to take care of cancer patience and willing to take on my husband. And countless other tender mercies. I am so grateful to a loving God who gives us trials and struggles. As hard as they may be, we always learn from them. And I believe as we learn patience and gratitude, we see the love of God in those times of trial. He loves us so much that He gives us opportunities to grow and gain experience. Life is hard sometimes, but we can get through those times when we put our trust God.

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  2. Gratitude is a choice. It is a habit. It just requires a little focus until you realize your blessings ALWAYS outweigh your trials a hundred fold. Not only that, we can grow to the point where we see trials as a blessing that will help refine us, and make us better in some way. I choose to be grateful, and that alone makes me happier. I know that each positive thing in my life is a gift, and that changes how I act and how I treat others. I try to thank God every day for my many blessings, and in turn I believe He blesses me with more.

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  3. I was diagnosed a couple of years ago with an auto immune disease that had left me bed ridden for about a year and a half. It was an extremely difficult time and I just remember being so tired of being in constant pain. However, during that time I think that I became closer to God than during any other time in my life and I wouldn't trade that for anything. Knowing that Christ knew exactly how I felt and what I was going through gave me so much comfort and relief. After a lot of prayer and the blessing I was given of a good doctor I started to make major progress back to health. I know that whatever trial we are going through whether it be physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual, Christ knows what we are going through and he suffered for our pains because he loves us. Heavenly Father loves us and He will always hear us and answer our prayers in the way that is best for us.

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  4. It's very true that those annoying little things stack up. One thing I try to do is make all the awesome little things stack up higher: the car turned on this morning, I got that left-turn arrow, my allergies aren't acting up. We have so much to be grateful for!

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