Canadian Thanksgiving was last month, and we celebrated with my dear friend and her family. It was a wonderful, wonderful time and I have had many moments of looking back on that table laden with wonderful food, surrounded by happy, friendly faces. There was joy, and it is an emotional snapshot I treasure in my heart. Today, is American Thanksgiving, and no doubt many of my friends are celebrating with their families and friends in similar fashion. to you, I wish all the blessings and joy that we experienced. Sadly, that’s not what everyone will experience. For some, it’s because family has to be shared with other family, and it’s not ‘their year’. For others, it’s because it can be so difficult to find something to be thankful for. There is no turkey, no cranberries, no stuffing. There aren’t even family or friends or pets to share it with. Maybe it’s been a year of loss for you, and you’re missing precious souls who would normally be there. Maybe a relationship has fallen apart, or you are facing illness. Maybe your loved ones are in a war zone, or in some cases, they are the war zone. It can all be overwhelming, especially on a day like Thanksgiving. I want you to know that I’m thinking of you and praying for you today. I may not know your name, and we may never meet, but I have felt pain similar to yours. I know it can be acute at the holidays. Everyone is happy, it seems, except you. Everyone has purpose, it seems, except you. It’s lonely and it’s depressive.
But you know what? There is joy to be found, in spite of your circumstances. For me, that joy is found in giving thanks to God as often as I can, even if it’s just for being alive to feel the pain. Have Hope.
It is clear to us, friends, that God not only loves you very much but also has put his hand on you for something special.
I Thessalonians 1:4 The Message
And I’m not here to preach at you. I just want you to know that you matter. God has put his hand on you for something special. I’m sorry if you are hurting. But please, don’t give up.