Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thanks in all Situations

It seems that everyone is doing a thankfulness post this week, and I thought I'd join in. As I sit here and ponder all that I am thankful for, I am finding myself thinking about Corrie Ten Boom and her book "The Hiding Place." I read this book in 5th or 6th grade, and I remember just being blown away by her story. She and her father were very active in hiding refugees and rescuing Jews during the Holocaust. Eventually, her family members were sent to prison. Her father died, and she and her sister were sent to concentration camps, where eventually, her sister died as well. It was such a depressing story until the end. Corrie ten Boom was released from the concentration camp. It was later found that she was released on a clerical error, and one week after she was released, all of the women prisoners who were her age at the camp were killed.

The thing that stuck out to me the most from this story was Corrie's thankfulness to God. Back then I understood why she would be thankful that God had miraculously spared her from death. However, I DIDN'T understand why she was thankful for everything else. I remember her specifically writing that during her life, God had taught her to be thankful in every situation. While she was starving and being treated so brutally at the concentrations camps, and even when she lost members of her family she knew that she had to be thankful. This hit me really hard when I was about twelve years old reading this book. I had never realized before that we were supposed to be thankful for the bad things too. And I really respected Corrie ten Boom for being able to do that during the horrific times in her life, as well as the good ones.

All that to say, God uses all situations in our lives for good. Things may seem horrible at the time, but God knows what He is doing!

I am thankful for all the obvious things:

A God who loves me unconditionally and who has saved me!

A husband who is my best friend, and who I will get to share my whole life with.

Loving and supportive family members who have been there for me no matter what.

A job where I learn new things every day.

A house that is not just a house, but also a HOME.

A full stomach.

The ability to wake up everyday and live this life!

Pretty good health.

Today I am trying to also be thankful for the things that may be a little harder to understand:

I'm thankful for the fact that our car engine broke. Through this situation, we have learned to trust God with our finances more. I actually notice it now every month when the tithe goes out and it has caused me to trust God with our finances and remember that everything we have is really his. We are just stewards of His things. Also, the money could have really blessed the mechanic in a time when he needed it. And finally, our car will be like a brand new car now, and will last a lot longer.

I'm thankfulor all that is going on with my job. Although it's hard, God is teaching me to stand up for myself more. Also, I am finding myself leaning on Him so much more since this year I am out of my comfort zone in a lot of situations at work.

And I'm thankful for my recent health problems (I gotta be honest, this one is hard to be thankful for!) When I'm having stomach pains in the middle of the night, I find myself praying basically the whole time. Mostly I'm praying that God will relieve the pain, and he always eventually brings me comfort and relieves me. I'm thankful that those cramps have only been coming once a night, that they always end after about an hour, and that God always seems to bring me an amazing amount of comfort afterwards. It's usually at about 2 or 3 in the morning, and something about the quiet of the middle of the night makes me feel like it's just me and God. No other distractions (except the pain :-P). I'm thankful that I seem to be getting better, and that this is the only health problem that I have. I know so many people have it so much worse!

My life has been pretty easy so far. These past few months have been harder on me than probably any other time. And yet I don't think I would trade them. Don't get me wrong...there are definitely times when I don't see it that way! But in hindsight, I can see that I have experienced God's comfort and peace so immensely during these past few months. I keep saying they have been the worst months in a long time, but also the best ones. I'm learning so much. And although my experiences don't even begin to compare to what Corrie ten Boom went through, I can learn through her that I need to be thankful in all situations.

"Every experience God gives us, every person He puts in our lives, is the perfect preparation for the future that only He can see" ~ Corrie ten Boom


  1. We have alot in common for the things we are thankful for. Our amazing God.... just so blessed. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  2. Awesome reminder! Praying through the hard times is a great way to draw us closer to God. My husband & I experienced that in the months leading up to our wedding. We had external pressures from friends & family, and we had no choice but to take it to God in prayer...and it helped strengthen our relationship with GOD and EACH OTHER so much. It was awesome.

    Hope your pains go away soon...

    Happy Thanksgiving!!

  3. Great post, Jessica! It takes alot of effort to be thankful for the bad things, but as time goes on it gets easier to be thankful for those bad things too. I wasn't thankful at all last year when we were out of work, but in hindsight we grew alot closer to each other and the Lord - He taught us to rely on Him for even basic things, and we learned how to handle a stressful situation together right off the bat. We also actually got to spend some great time together since we weren't really working then, which was nice for us being newlyweds and all! All things work together for good for them that love God and are called according to His purpose, as Romans says!


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