Grieving and grateful
Does gratitude feel difficult to find in this season?
I've been there. Giving thanks can feel near impossible when your heart is shattered.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 says, "Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."
How? How do we rejoice when we are faced with death? How do we give thanks when we weep with sorrow?
We need not be grateful for all things. Death is the result of the fall. Death is the result of evil and sin tainting God's perfect creation. Death is the enemy. We need not be grateful for death.
But we can have gratitude in the midst of all things.
In death, we are incredibly grateful that this life is not the end. In death, we rejoice in the promise of eternal life for those who are in Christ. In death, we rejoice that we have been saved. In death, we rejoice in our blessed hope–Christ Jesus.
In sorrow, we are grateful that the Holy Spirit intercedes for us. In sorrow, we are grateful for the comfort that is only found in Christ. In sorrow, we rejoice in peace beyond our own understanding. In sorrow, we rejoice that one day He will wipe every tear from our weary eyes.
We need not be grateful for death. We can be grateful for how God is sanctifying us. Grateful to God. Grateful for how He uses it. Grateful and grieving.
Grief and gratitude are not exclusive.
Today, your heart may feel broken.
Today, your eyes may be filled with tears of sorrow.
Today, you may mourn over all that has been lost.
Today, you may feel heavy with grief.
Today, I hope you know that it is okay to mourn.
Today, I hope you know that you need not be grateful for death.
Today, I hope you know that your grief need not cancel out your gratitude.
Today, I hope your weary heart can rejoice in the promise that this life is not the end.
Today, I hope you can rejoice with teary eyes, knowing that Christ conquered death and will come again to destroy it for all time.
Today, I pray your broken heart is filled with gratitude for all Christ has done, all He is doing in us, and all He will continue to do.
Today, I pray we rejoice in the unshakable hope we have in Christ.
Even in sorrow. Even through tears.