Trust in the LORD with all your heart,
and do not depend on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will direct your paths.
Not feeling much like being thankful? I know. When you’re hurting, being thankful is not in your mind. And even if you think about being thankful, the fact is you don’t want to be.
And a picture of a sunset or snowflake or flower won’t do a thing for you. Not when you’re feeling some deep loss or despair.
Feel the pain. It’s okay.
But lift your tear stained face off that pillow for a minute and breathe. You see the now. But there is a tomorrow. And the next day. And the next. Don’t let the sorrow consume you to the point of not wanting to live. Just as quickly as that pain stormed down the door and pounced on you – it can leave just as quickly.
There is something to be thankful for. Something.
Abraham Lincoln gave a proclamation to the American people during the Civil War. Despite a time of severe sorrow and loss, he leads the country in establishing our national holiday on the last Thursday of November, and called it Thanksgiving. What? How can this be?
Finding something to be thankful for is not avoiding or ignoring the pain. But it will help you through it. Abraham Lincoln must have known that.
The world is not perfect.
Our bodies are not perfect.
Things wear out. Things go wrong.
That should go without saying. But often, we are surprised when it happens to us.
The Bible says God works all things out for our good. That’s very comforting. Especially when you have experienced God doing this for you.
Having panic attacks disrupted my rhythm. But they caused me to see life in a new way. Not only was I sincerely grateful for medication that helped (which caused gratefulness to be extended in other areas), but I found areas in my life where I needed to slow down, manage stress, and most of all, feeling empathy, sympathy, and compassion for others. This wasn’t a lesson, but God’s desire to free us from things that we do not realize hinder us. He just doesn’t think the way we do. He takes the ashes and gives us beauty.
Whatever you are going through, it’s not the end of the story. I know it seems like it, but just like the rainbow after a storm, we have hope.
Nature reveals the heart of God for humanity. Even if you don’t believe in God, or are not sure there is a God, all you have to do is look around and you will see him everywhere.
And even if your situation doesn’t change, God gives us the comfort and strength to endure.
Since the loss of my son, I began having panic attacks.
If you have them, you know what they are. They’re scary!
After the 3rd visit at the ER, a very kind doctor asked me, “Why won’t you take the medicine your doctor recommended? What are you afraid of?”
I wanted to cry out, “Because I’m a Christian and we don’t take stuff like that!”
But I didn’t. I was silent.
“If you had diabetes, you would be taking insulin, true?”
The light went on. I’m not weak in my faith. I had misdirected faith. Would I have the faith to trust God to do something I didn’t understand? That I didn’t want to do?
I filled the prescription and it took less than a week to get straightened around.
The scary part of panic attacks was my mind racing. I felt like I was losing control. But the truth was, I wasn’t.
Truth is a wonderful thing. Perhaps difficult to admit to at first, but it really does set you free.
~to be continued~