Being REAL Thankful Even When You Don’t Feel Like It…

You know today was a bit tougher than I had anticipated.  Chris is leaving to go be with my bro and sis in law and then on to see his dad for Thanksgiving.  Though we have wonderful plans and at this moment I can hear the children singing a song they plan to perform tomorrow for their Thanksgiving play…it is still hard to be away from my hubby.  I have cried a few tears today and cried out to God in understanding…but also disappointment. 



It is hard to think that in less than a week Caleb’s buddy is going to hop on a plane back to Colorado.  And more painfully…though we will make other friends with families in Uganda, unless they are  local, they will all come and go before we do.  This is tough.  Period.  Hard too because it is not just my heart aching but the heart of children that I love and no parent ever really wants to see their childrens’ hearts hurt.  

So…do we protect?  Do we live in a bubble?  Do we never let them run for fear they will fall?  When is the right age to allow them to experience real life?  Pain?  Clearly–the Cockerhams have chosen the earlier the better.  The pain of this world is real.   The sooner that we can be allowed to see and experience real pain the sooner we are able to learn to run to the only Source that can truly comfort.  This is all good on paper but it is still painful to witness and live out!

So today I have so many things to be thankful for but this blog may be a bit of “the things I miss from the US” as well as how God is meeting me on a more painful day than others…

I am thankful for soy pumpkin spice lattes, (let’s be honest starbucks), small group, wonderful neighbors, p.o.w.e.r., unplugged at Hope Holly Springs, a good book to devour, trader joes, sacred sistahs, whole foods, target, wake zone, urban turban, long walks on the beach, long walks anywhere without 5 kids, short skirts or anything above the knee, Christmas music in early November,  (who am I kidding? ANYTHING Christmas this time of year), Paula Rinehart–best therapist ever, date nights with my hubby, my family, girls night out, kim crawford, irregardless, my juicer, spinach, knitting needles, and my very best friend on the planet and my partner for this life…Chris Cockerham.

A friend shared an excerpt that was written for me this morning.  It is written by Sarah Young from Jesus Lives and it is written from God’s voice…

“When ongoing problems require you to stick it out over the long haul, your faith sometimes falters.  (Um yes.)  That’s when you resort to grimly gritting your teeth–simply passing time in a negative frame of mind.  (Yes, I have a strong history with this please see my negative framing blog )  This is not the way I want you to deal with difficulties.  I am sovereign over the circumstances of your life, so there are always opportunities to be found in them.  Sometimes those opportunities are so obvious you can’t miss seeing them.  At other times–especially when the journey is hard and seems endless–you have to search for hidden treasure.  Do not be like the man who hid his master’s talent in the ground because he was disgruntled with his circumstances.  He gave up and took the easy way out:  blaming his hard situation rather than making the most of his opportunity.  The truth is, the more difficult your situation, the more treasure there is for you to discover in it.

I gladly give you Glory strength; it is limitless and freely available to each of my followers.  It is exceedingly potent, because the Spirit Himself empowers you–strengthening you with Power in your inner being.  Moreover Glory strength enables you to keep on enduring the unendurable. (I do see this as truth because honestly on paper if you had shown me my circumstances I would have told you straight up I could not do it.)  Since the strength has no limits, there is more than enough of it to spill over into joy.  

(Colossians 1:11 msg, Ephesians 3:16)

So on a day that was more difficult than others, this was the word I received from the Lord.  Hand delivered by a friend. It is hard to stay stuck too long with this kind of message from the mouth of God to my ears.  

On this Thanksgiving (2013) a Thanksgiving I will never forget–I am thankful for so many many things but ultimately I am thankful for a God that is real and a God with whom I can be real.  He is not afraid of my discomfort or disappointment…and he will not turn from me in my faultering faith.  He loves me and knows that life is hard.  I am grateful to learn and re-learn this and then teach it to my children…even at an early age.

 

 (This pose looks like we are going to prom at the equator!)

Happy Thanksgiving! 

Jenni 

  

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