Faith & Reflection
I used to think that people complain because they have problems, however, I’ve inverted that view somewhat. People often have problems because they complain!
Complaining doesn’t change or improve anything. It amplifies frustration and highlights discontent. Psalm 77:3 corroborates this saying, “I complained and my spirit was overwhelmed.”
Conversely, the giving of thanks is uplifting and can facilitate effective problem-solving and positive steps forward. Lois Kaufman’s letter to Jesus, following her husband’s death and her bout with cancer, powerfully attests to this.
“Dear Jesus, I’ve written a lot of “Thank Yous” lately, but this is my first one to you. Until now I didn’t appreciate your gifts to me these past several months.
Thank you for taking Don home to be with you. Now I’ll never be concerned with what the future holds for him. His days are guaranteed. Thank you for giving him such a wonderful Christmas. Thank you for making his birthday that last Sunday his best ever.
Thank you for putting me in the hospital three weeks after he died and showing me the way you could use his death in my life. I wasn’t always sure how to approach others with the Gospel. But now you have given me so many openings, I can hardly handle them all.
Thank you for my most recent surgery and for the lessons it taught me. Especially for showing me how much I needed you. Thanks for letting me see what it is like to face surgery and suffering without you as I watched the difference in the lives of my roommates.
Thank you for the lessons Becky and Lori (her daughters) have learned from this. I could never have taught them the way you did. That’s because of the great Teacher you are. I can’t wait to see what you give them on their heavenly report cards.
You know, Jesus, I wouldn’t have planned my life this way. In fact, I would have planned it just the opposite. I would have sought to avoid death’s knock. I would have ducked out on the surgeries and tried to pretend that Christians were kept well by you all the time. But I would have missed out on so much.
The kids are sorry they couldn’t be with their dad on Father’s Day, but we were glad he could be with both his earthly and Heavenly Father this year.
Oh, I could go on with this letter, but I could never cover everything I have to thank you for. So I’ll send more, but for now please accept this as a beginning. With Thanksgiving, Lois”
“Give thanks to the Lord of lords, for his steadfast love endures forever” (Psalm 136:3).
Happy belated Thanksgiving!