A Sacred Thanksgiving

“Do not get tired of doing what is good.  Do not get discouraged and give up, for we reap a harvest of  blessings at the appropriate time”. 

–Galatians 6:9

I am certain that for all of us, at times, it seems like no matter how hard we pray, or how many sacrifices we may make, or how many good things we do, God just isn’t answering our prayers.  It is especially true for me right now in this season of my life. At times, I do feel like giving up, I am tired of always having to do the right thing, and I am very discouraged. But the passage above reminds me to hold on to my faith, as God has promised that He will reap a harvest of blessings for me in His own time.  I just need to be patient, keep on doing the right thing, keep on praying, and be strong during this difficult time.

Thanksgiving is a time when we thank the Lord for the harvest of blessings which He has bestowed upon us.  That means we should also thank the Lord for the trials and tribulations in our lives, because out of those times come greater compassion, greater understanding and wisdom, and a greater love for God and others.

When I read this passage, I’m reminded of a time 21 years ago, when I found out that I couldn’t have children. After a period of pain and depression and discouragement and wanting to give up, God chose to reap His harvest of blessings on me in the form of adoption.  God chose me to become the mother to two beautiful babies over the course of three years, and who are now beautiful young women. This gift of motherhood is the most incredible blessing I have ever received from God.  Even with the tumultuous changes of this past year in my relationship with my oldest daughter, I still treasure the gift of this woman child, and I wouldn’t want to give up on being her mom.  Now, don’t get me wrong–there have been days when I was so discouraged that I wanted to just give up on everything, but that didn’t mean I wanted to give up on her or my relationship with her.  I just wanted to give up because the pain was so great.

This Thanksgiving will be a time of reflection.  I will be grateful for the blessings my family has received, the hardships my family have experienced, and God’s steadfastness throughout this most difficult time.  I will be grateful for the good times and the bad, the lessons learned, the love that we still share amongst each other despite the pain and agony we have suffered.  I will be grateful that God held me while my world crashed around me, and He put me back together so I could continue to function as a wife and a mother and a counselor.  I will be grateful for having the experience of having something so sacred being ripped from my life because it helped me to learn how to love and let go and forgive.

This Thanksgiving I will especially ponder the wonderful blessing of the birth mothers of my daughters.  As my daughters approach the age of perhaps being able to meet their birth mothers for the first time, I pray that these wonderful women will look at our daughters  and say to me “Thank you for a job well done”.  I pray that I have not let them down in any way.  I pray that they have experienced a harvest of blessings from the Lord in their lives.  And I thank them for their selfless act of allowing me to be their kids’ mom.

“This is the first measure of thanksgiving:  a thankfulness that springs from love”.
William C. Skeath

©2008, Valerie Wolff

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