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Saturday, November 13, 2010

November of Thanksgiving: 13

"...In everything give thanks" 1 Thessalonians 5:18.

When Corrie ten Boom and her sister Betsie arrived at the German prison camp, Ravensbrück, Corrie was greatly distressed to discover that their sleeping pallets were not only rotting, rancid and stacked far too high, they were flea infested. She complained to her sister, but Betsie's response was far different than Corrie expected. She told her that they should thank God for the fleas. They had read the passage in 1 Thessalonians in which the above, powerful snippet falls, and Betsie used it as the proof text for her assertion. Corrie did not agree. She determined she would not thank God for fleas.

Their job was to knit socks for the German soldiers. Corrie and Betsie were fast knitters and because of this, they would finish before the other prisoners and then read the Bible to the others while they worked. God had miraculously allowed them to bring in a Bible to the prison camp, in spite of the rigors they were put through before coming in (you will need to read The Hiding Place to see how God did this - it is a beautiful account) and mysteriously, the guards did not come into their barracks, so they did not interfere. It was much later when they discovered why, the fleas.

Thirteen: I am thankful for my struggles with sin and my health. When God commands us to "Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus" (vv. 16-18), He means it. I am thankful that I still struggle with sin and that my health is not good, because if I were sinless and painless, I would become self-reliant and haughty, and I wouldn't have any need for God. As it is, I must rely on Him to get me through the day. I must ask His forgiveness when I sin and lean heavily upon Him when I am unwell. I must depend on His mercy, His grace, and His promise that one day, my sanctification will be complete and when I see Him face to face, I will no longer sin and my body will be restored to perfect health, for all eternity. 
The unbeliever will not see those things as good, but from my unblinded, understanding eyes, they are not stumbling blocks, they are blessings from a loving God, who knows what is best for His child.

What things are you thanking God for as we close in on Thanksgiving Day? Rebecca over at Rebecca Writes invites you to share your thankfulness with the Lord and others. Will you join the rest of us who have accepted this delightful invitation?

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