We’re entering our holiday season and it starts with the week of Thanksgiving. Do we need a special week or day set aside to give thanks? I’ve seen people on Facebook posting their “30 days of thankfulness.” That’s a whole month! 1 day, 7 days, 30 days or 365 days “thanks to the Lord” is something we all owe.
Often, I get the opportunity to help people who have suffered from a disaster in their life. If it’s a large disaster I always find people who have such a precious attitude about their situation. Many will thank God for the little things. “Thank God I saved my family pictures,” or “my coin collection.” Others will thank God they were saved from the disaster or even their loved ones.
I met one a few weeks ago at one of the fires in California. She and her husband had been woken up by a desperate neighbor around 11:30 p.m. They went to the front door frantic, wearing their night clothes, the fire was so close all they could do was run from their front door. They could not change or grab anything or the fire would’ve overtaken them.
She really did have a thankful heart. She and her most valuable possession, her husband, survived. She had lost every earthly position and yet she was thankful to God for saving them both. God never promises us he will save us from disaster, but he does promise he will be with us no matter what happens. It was obvious to me this lady felt the presence of God during this dreadful time.
Can you thank God in the midst of a disaster? Some of us have lost loved ones or suffered health issues. Sometimes we have disaster all around us. It doesn’t have to be a fire or tornado. Life often seems to come apart all at once. Open the newspaper and you can see the world isn’t short of difficulties. The holiday season often gets us wound up like we’re in a disaster. I know it’s a busy season for all of us.
In the end, what matters isn’t material possessions, but our eternal relationships. Like Job said: “I know that my redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand on the earth. And after my skin has been destroyed, yet in my flesh I will see God; … How my heart yearns within me!” No matter what the world around us is going through, let us be thankful for our family and friends around us and the promises our God has given us. “Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good. His love endures forever.”
Have a blessed Thanksgiving!
Captain Mark Cyr is pastor of The Salvation Army, 661 Colorado St. Carson City, NV 89701. For information go to carsoncity.salvationarmy.org