The Holidays are approaching. Why can’t life be like a Hallmark movie?
It's November and the coolness of fall fills the air. Pumpkins and scarecrows decorate porches. Green trees have started turning orange and red. Women quickly trade their flips for boots, and everyone facebooks that it’s sweater weather and makes a dash to the store to purchase chili ingredients. Families begin making plans for the holidays– where they will go and whose turn is it to host it this year? Who is cooking which dish and who is making the pies? There is an excitement in the air.
Thankfulness becomes the focus of our thoughts and with each passing day the anticipation grows as we get closer to everyone being together. Parents are happy and children are helpful. Love abounds. Single people fall in love. No one is alone or lonely. Families are intact and together and no one is sick or dying. It's the holidays? Everything is Merry and bright.
Except that life isn’t a Hallmark movie and real life rarely looks like that. Money could be tight and aunt Bessie doesn't like grandpa Joe and cousin Mabel is coming with her third husband and everyone is worried about how awkward that will be. The house needs to be cleaned and work is stressful, time is short, the kids are arguing and the dog needs a bath.
So what do we do when our holidays don't look like a perfectly decorated house full of happy, healthy people? What do we do when not everyone has a wonderful job and successful life void of any problems?
Give thanks. We are to give thanks.
Why do we give thanks when things are going wrong? Why should we give thanks when we are lonely or sad? Why are we to give thanks when we are confused or just plain worn out?
Because God commands it.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 says, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
When we give thanks to God it turns our hearts to Him and takes the focus off ourselves. It causes us to turn from the negative and turn to the positive. It is an act of trust.
Isaiah 30:15 says, …..in quietness and trust is your strength… .
I don’t know about you, but when I am tired, stressed, sad and lonely, the last thing I feel like doing is being quiet and trusting God. However, that is exactly what he tells us to do. His desire is for us to pour our hearts and needs out to Him and then to trust Him and thank Him while we wait.
So as the hustle and bustle begins and you feel yourself stressing remember to stop and thank the Lord for the blessings in your life. It might be difficult at first if you are not used to doing it. But it will become easier. As we put Christ first and focus on Him, we surrender our control. In doing so, we reap the abundant blessings God has for us. So ask yourself, “what can you be thankful for today?”