Friday, November 13, 2015

G.I.G.-Day 13

     It is sad to me that so often we must experience loss to recognize how truly blessed we are. It is impossible not to hear about Paris, and all of France, and not be whisked back to the attacks of 9/11 and feel their pain. It is also impossible to not want to pull all your loved ones close and be grateful that you can do so, knowing that there are many across the ocean who as a result of today's attacks will be denied that privilege.

Today I am thankful:

1. That God is in control. He is not unaware of what is happening in Europe anymore than He is not cognizant of what is happening in my life. He knows, and He has not abdicated His throne, even in the midst of turmoil.

2. For helpers. I love that Mr. Rogers quote where he said his mother told him in scary times to "look for the helpers". I know that there are people who are helping in France-even inviting complete strangers into their homes to keep them out of harms' way, and I am thankful that those people exist.

3. For heroes. I know that many stories of heroism will arise from this tragedy. I still wish it hadn't happened, but it is always inspiring to hear about those who take this as an opportunity to display the best attributes of human nature: selflessness, bravery, courage, and self-sacrifice.

4. That He hears our prayers. We can hashtag 'til the cows come home, but the actual uttering of our prayers is what's important. He does hear, and He does care.

5. For unity. One of the best things to come out of these horrible types of events is the unity that they bring. We can all come together over something like this-with compassion and mercy.

6. That I know how it all ends. I don't have to be afraid, because I know Who wins in the end. Today's events won't change that. The good guys will come out on top because He has already written the conclusion.

7. That He turns tragedy into triumph. "You intended this for evil, but God intended it for good...". I know there are believers in France, and the Lord will use this to further His kingdom, and bring glory to Himself.

8. For witnessing opportunities. Tragedy makes people look for God, and we have the chance to share about the hope that is found in Christ.

9. For reminders of things that are bigger than my little problems. I get so tired of my lame, first world, over-privileged and under-worked complaints. I would *never* ask for things like this to happen, but when they do it helps me to remember what really matters.

10. For hugging my family. Because others can't anymore, and no one is promised tomorrow.

11. For empathy. I remember watching the 9/11 attacks. I know those feelings, and I can understand what people thousands of miles away are feeling. Helpless, angry, afraid. And the strength of human emotions that feel like they are going to sweep you completely away. There is something bittersweet about that connection.

12. For faith. These things are so much bigger than I can understand or explain. I am glad that through faith I don't need to-I can just believe that God is in control and that is enough.

13. For peace that passes understanding. I don't have to know how it works, but I know Whose peace it it that I have. It doesn't make sense and it doesn't have to. But I am oh-so-thankful for it just the same.

   Today is your chance to give thanks in all circumstances...what are you thankful for?

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