As I prepared my heart and mind for Thanksgiving tomorrow, I made the obvious mental list of all the things I have in which I am grateful. But, something in my spirit kept prompting me to think about the things I do not have. I tried to dismiss it all day, but I can’t get away from the knowledge there are times when God says ‘No’.
I put off writing this article because I wanted to be able to share a lengthy list of items I don’t have and times when God told me ‘No’. But the reality is we often do not know the ways in which He has protected us; and we may never know. Obviously I can list cancer, a bald head, heavy spirit, anxiety and fear as things that I am thankful I do not have this year. But, what about all the other things?
What about all the times when we pray for things we really want (or think we “need”) and He says ‘No’? Maybe, just maybe, those weren’t the right things for the right time. What about the situations that weigh heavy on our hearts and He says ‘No’? Maybe He knows what you need now. Maybe He is protecting you from more trouble than you know.
And what about that test results that come back negative? Where was He when you cried out and asked for health? Asked for a miracle? I don’t have the answer. But I know that He is indeed in control. And He has a plan for your life that is good. (Jeremiah 29:11)
Although we have our wants and desires, sometimes we can not see down the road to where He is taking us. We don’t know the trials we need to go through to equip us with the faith we need to endure.
One thing I know, I have journeyed on a faith walk and He has proved He is faithful to meet all my needs in the exact time in which I need them.
This Thanksgiving I challenge you to thank Him for all the times He has said ‘No’ to things in your life. Knowing that His ways are not our ways (Isaiah 55:8)
I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. Philippians 4:11-12