Thankfulness and Gratitude
Hi, it’s Kimberley from Well Christian Woman.
Some of you may already know my story, but for those of you who don’t, I’m a 42 year old wife & mother with three small children, and obstetrician, who was diagnosed with terminal cancer about three months ago.
There have been a lot of emotions during these weeks and months, of course, and kind of ironically in some ways maybe, thankfulness and gratitude have been a couple of the things that I feel I have really been learning a lot more about and thinking a lot about in this time.
Having grown up in the church, you will hear people sometimes say things like “Oh, be thankful for your cancer and what that means in your life”, “Be thankful for your job loss”, Be thankful for your infertility”, and I always thought those are some of the most useless things I have ever really heard.
I think where that sometimes comes from is, even when Paul is giving instructions to the Thessalonians in 1 Thessalonians 5:18 he says: “Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”
I don’t pretend to be an expert on this but my take it that he’s saying, be thankful IN all circumstances not FOR all circumstances because I can tell you I am not thankful for metastatic cancer. I think that would be a ridiculous thing to say, but what I have been learning a lot is that I can be thankful IN the situation of having this diagnosis.
I can have gratitude for the way seeking God and focusing on God is changing my life, and changing my marriage, and my relationship with my kids, my relationships with friends and even changing some of the people around me, I think, in really positive ways.
That’s a different thing. That’s being thankful for the things that are happening in this circumstance not necessarily thankful for the circumstance.
I have so much gratitude for what people pour out to us, for the prayers, and the love, and the daily blessings that I could never even begin to name. You see people and how good people are and how good God is. How even in what I would imagine is probably the most difficult circumstance I could be in I’m able, through God’s help, to have that thankfulness and gratitude and just keep working on it, and realizing how much better it makes each day.
So, I hope that that can ring true for some of you as well and that you’ve already experienced that and can share some of your experiences.