I was a single parent of three teenagers. And in those years before they left home and began making their own way in the world, I knew both the depths of despair and the miraculous grace and saving power of the Lord Jesus Christ. Time and time again, when I wasn’t sure I’d make ends meet, somehow there would be enough. When I feared for the wellbeing of my children’s fragile hearts, there was Jesus and the comfort only His Spirit can provide. God used so many people in my life to support, supply and sustain us physically, emotionally and spiritually. I am forever grateful for the beauty of the body of Christ at work to care.
Of course, that was many years ago, and to this day I will, on occasion, suddenly be reminded of God’s goodness to me at the hands of His people. Blessed memories of different ones bringing food, cleaning my house, dropping a check in the mail to make Christmas a little brighter. Gratitude has a strange and wonderful energy. It thrums to keep the heart from stagnant bitterness and clear the cobwebs of self-pity. It focuses the mind and recognizes the Giver of all good things.
I am one of the faithful whose memories are truly blessed. (Proverbs 10:7 NKJV) I choose to remember His goodness and the joy of His peace rather than the brief moment of darkness before His light dispelled fear and His promise produced hope. I couldn’t always see how it was going to turn out, but I could always see Him if I looked with my heart.
Jesus in my heart is constant and true, and “even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil.” (Psalm 23:4a NASB) This King, this Savior, this constant Companion, He is my resurrection and my life. I owe Him everything.
Dear one, what dark moments in your life have need of the light of His presence? They may be past moments in which you need to know He was there. They may be present moments in which you need to know He is near. Lift up your eyes and let gratitude sing. It may not make sense, but it will bring comfort. Victory is not always changed circumstances. We stand in victory when gratitude for life in Christ changes us from victims to heirs.
Until next week, beloved, may you rise from the ashes of defeat by the Spirit of the resurrected King.