May your Thanksgiving holiday be a time to truly give thanks to the One who is worthy of all our praise. He is the One who has created everything. He is the One who holds all things together. He is God. He is good. He never changes. He has no shadow of turning at all. He is Lord when the sun is shining. He is Lord when the rains are pouring down.
Maria and I were talking last night about faith regarding the struggles that we sometimes face in the midst of childhood cancer. The last few days have really hit Maria hard, although today she is doing great. Anyway, what we realize is that the faith that God gives us (yes, faith is a gift that is given by Him according to His pleasure, not something that can be conjured up by us) is a faith that transcends reason and transcends circumstances, yet it does not transcend pain. We can trust in the Lord with all our hearts in the midst of some of the worst circumstances that we have ever encountered. The faith He gives us allows us to see that He is still totally good even though our circumstances totally suck. That’s the gift of faith.
His gift of faith also transcends reason. We can be told that our daughter only has a 50% chance to survive this cancer, yet God gives us the faith that fully believes that He is able to defy all odds and bring healing to her if He so chooses. If HE so chooses. That’s right, God is the One who determines the fate of our little girl just as much as He determines the fate of every one of His created beings. So, the gift of faith that He gives us lets us trust Him in the face of reason and know that He is able to defy reason.
But the gift of faith that He gives us does not transcend pain. That’s just the way that He designed this gift. It does not exempt us from the pain and suffering of the circumstances, but it enables us to walk through them knowing that our God holds us close.
We don’t understand why He is choosing this path for us, but the gift of faith that He gives us enables us to trust Him completely, to recognize that He is always good, and to be able to endure the suffering and pain that we find ourselves in.
And it is the gift of faith that He gives us which enables us to rejoice in the Lord and give Him thanks in all things.
I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving. (Psalm 69:30)