So, a senior walks in to pick up his cap and gown. We are all smiles as we hand it to him but him not so much. He flatly says he may not make it to graduation. We inquire why not? He just says “my mom is having brain surgery today and we don’t know if she is going to make it.” The silence fills the room and I am so caught off guard that my brain, empty of all thought escapes me. I just say dumbly “I am so sorry to hear that.” Then “let us know if there is anything we can do?” He leaves and we both realize we were holding our breath. Then the tears come with the weight of this young man just about to enter the world of adulthood which should be a time of celebration. Ugggg!
Then today at church prayers for a family who just lost their son who was set to graduate to a motorcycle accident. Brings back memories of my graduating year where a group of girls was in a car rollover coming back from Lake Mead. Our friend, Tina lost her life and another was paralyzed. Tina’s mother walked the stage to receive her daughter’s diploma. Life can be so wondrous, but being alive also comes with it sometimes great pain and sorrow. Prayers for healing to both the families in the season of sorrow and uncertainty.
“Have mercy on me, Lord, for I am faint; heal me, Lord, for my bones are in agony. My soul is in deep anguish. How long, Lord, how long?” (Psalm 6: 2-3).
It is okay to question as David did-the boy shepherd who would one day be king. He went through many trials and tribulations in his lifetime. In 1 Samuel 13, he tells King Saul that “the Lord has sought out a man after his own heart and appointed him ruler of his people.” Even in his darkest moments, David had gratitude in his heart for all God was doing in his life.
What is the difference between being thankful and having gratitude? David expressed gratitude over and over again-the strongest connection between his heart and God.
Thankful: Being thankful or thanking someone often implies you are acknowledging your thanks for something that someone has given you. You can exhibit your thanks to the world through acts of service or words.
Gratitude: being grateful is about appreciating what one has, as opposed to what one wants. gratitude is felt by the soul alone, a soul connected intrinsically to a higher power. Gratitude embodies a general state of thankfulness.
On my blog, I talk about being grateful. As I was leaving from my kidney ultrasound I am thankful to have access to my medical needs. I am grateful Jesus walks beside me everyday. When I am stressed. worried, overwhelmed, depressed, or anxious waiting on test results. I am grateful that God put it upon my heart to finish central academy so I am thankful for my family showing up to my graduation on Monday.
So many instances to be thankful and having true gratitude for the God who loved me so much he died on a cross for me, rose again, and will be coming back to take us to his kingdom where there will be no pain or sorrow ever again.
The song “Gratitude” by Brandon Lake was played at our graduation. Then at church this morning. I played it every morning headed to work this week. I can’t express the power of worship. Let the words of praise wash over you today.
So come on, my soul
Oh, don't you get shy on me
Lift up your song
'Cause you've got a lion inside of those lungs
Get up and praise the Lord
Prayers for each of you in whatever season this post finds you in. May you be blessed. May the healing come. May the heartbreak cease. May you be comforted in your grief. May your soul find your inner heart’s gratitude.