Thank You for the Sacrifice

There is something special about November. Besides the beautiful fall canvas, it’s the one month we intentionally redirect our lives toward a reflection of gratitude.
Although there is much to be grateful for, I wanted to acknowledge those who have sacrificed themselves for others. Their unselfish ways have changed lives and have made this world a better place. It is with a grateful heart that I thank …

Our family and friends … a circle of people who have been with us through it all. I am grateful for their love, patience, and grace. Their kindness and support. I am grateful for every person in every season. Every relationship serves a purpose, even those that are challenging as there was a lesson to be learned. Whether relationships have been loving or hurtful, I am grateful for both. Each experience has made me smarter, stronger, and wiser than yesterday. Thank you for loving me (and my jokes).

Our volunteers … it takes a very special person to give up their time and money for the sake of others. Many volunteers serve for countless hours ensuring strangers are cared for. Without hesitation, many will put their life on the line by rushing to disastrous events, some across the world. So many people who have suffered severe trauma are met with a smile and a helping hand. Volunteers offer love and compassion and make the world a better place. Could you imagine a world where we all had a volunteer’s heart?

Our doctors, nurses, EMT’s, and firefighters … I cannot begin to think of those who are on call to serve their community when we are at our worst, both mentally and physically. The endless hours and how many events were missed due to erratic shift work. Being exhausted and dealing with patients’ tantrums. You are the epitome of selfishness and tenderness and offer a foundation of encouragement and support. You are the last witnesses of lost life and the first witnesses of a new life. You set aside your own tears and mental health to care for us. Thank you for your strength and comfort, and for calming us all in our desperate times of need.

Our police … thank you for putting our safety first. Every person leaves their family to go to work and usually comes back by evening. No one is sure that a police officer will come back alive or composed. Each day, you risk your own life for the safety of the community. Your work comes with hours of insomnia and sacrificing your own family and comfort to reach out to the people who can possibly cause harm to others. Thank you for your courage and protection of the citizens, and the dutiful effort to maintain peace and order in very unpredictable circumstances.

Our veterans … a group of men and women who sacrifice all of who they are, along with their families who are constantly moving to accommodate the location of service. With determination and grace, you accept every obstacle and risk. It’s because of you that each of us can enjoy safety and freedom. Our country’s greatness is built on the foundation of your courage and sacrifice. Every veteran, past and present is a hero. You are the backbone of our country, and a country without its soldiers is like God without his angels. Freedom is a fragile thing, and we are, because you gave – thank you!

Most importantly, Jesus … where do I begin? God, I thank you for sending us your Holy Son. Thank you for sacrificing what You loved most so that we could experience intimacy with you. Jesus, you suffered such pain for me. You said I was loved and worthy of the cross. You suffered horrifically for me and because of your sacrifice, I am blessed with eternity and peace in a world filled with chaos. I thank you for carrying me through each of my battles, you’ve never left my side – although I accused you of doing so. Thank you for providing for all my needs, and not my wants. Thank you for the blessings seen and unseen. Thank you for the good times and the bad times. Each moment serves a purpose and it’s when I grow the most. Thank you for your patience, grace and a love that has no conditions (a hard one to grasp). Thank you that your
love surrounds me. Thank you for your promises, and the truth. Thank you for sharing your heart with me. You are kind, patient, gentle, and loving. You truly do care about my day-to-day, and we are on this journey together. Thank you for being my safe tower and for filling me with your spirit so I may love others as you do.

God’s Truth: Give thanks to the God of heaven, for His lovingkindness (graciousness, mercy,compassion) endures forever – Psalm 136:26

God’s Truth: Do not be anxious or worried about anything, but in everything [every
circumstance and situation] by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, continue to make your [specific] requests known to God and the peace of God (that peace which reassures the heart, that peace) which transcends all understanding, (that peace which) stands guard over your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus (is yours) – Philippians 4:6-7

Thanksgiving is a relationship between God and man, and we have a choice every day to give thanks to God. Having a thankful heart can change your entire perspective and outlook on life. One of the best ways to experience the power of thanksgiving is through prayer. When we offer a prayer of thanks to God, our focus shifts from our problems to our blessings.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours and may God’s sacrificial love change your heart forever.