Surfing the internet, I came across an old article from Elisabeth Elliot's newsletter. Here is an excerpt from that article:
Some people are substituting “Turkey Day” for Thanksgiving. I think it must be because they are not aware that there’s anybody to thank, and the most important thing about the holiday is food. Christians know there is Somebody to thank, but often when we make a list of things to thank Him for we include only things we like. A bride can’t get away with that. She writes a note to everybody, not only the rich uncle who gave the couple matching BMW’s, but the poor aunt who gave them a crocheted toilet-paper cover. In other words, she has to express thanks for whatever she’s received.
Take the list of whatever we’re not thankful for and measure it against the mighty foundations stones of our faith. Some of us know very little of suffering, but we know disappointments and betrayals and loss and bitterness. Are we really meant to thank God for such things? Let’s be clear about one thing: God does not cause all the things we don’t like. But He does permit them to happen because it is in this fallen world that we humans must learn to walk by faith. He doesn’t leave us to ourselves, however. He shares every step. He walked this lonesome road first, He gave Himself for us, He died for us. “Can we not trust such a God to give us, with Him, everything else that we can need?” [Rom. 8:32 JBP] Those disappointments give us the chance to learn to know Him and the meaning of His gifts, and in the midst of darkness, to receive His light. Doesn’t that transform the not-thankful list into a thankful one?
Lord, thank you for transforming our darkness into light, our trials into triumphs, our weakness into strength.