This week in the United States is Thanksgiving, a time to be thankful for all the people, experiences, and other things in our lives. This has been a pretty tough year. My wife lost her Dad earlier this year, which contributed to us going through a very difficult time. I also lost my day job due to a major change at the company I was working at, and then my wife lost hers due to budget cuts. I recently found a new job and am delighted with it, but she is struggling to find work after a contract ended following her employment. But through all of this, I still have plenty to be thankful for. Most importantly, God is good, and his mercies endure forever. Let me just tell you.
My first grandchild was born in September. My daughter had a beautiful baby boy. He is happy and healthy, eating like crazy, and a pure joy to hold. I’m looking forward to taking him to his first baseball game, attending his school plays, and imparting whatever wisdom and stories I can.
I am now working as an associate analyst for AML RightSource. We help banks and other financial institutions with their government-mandated anti-money laundering investigations. We investigate fraud, human drug and weapon trafficking, elder abuse, embezzlement, terrorist financing, and other crimes that involve money and its misuse. It’s fairly technical but very interesting work, and I am grateful for the opportunity to learn about it and work in this space.
Perhaps the most interesting thing to me about this job is that I didn’t even know it existed. The Lord put it into my daily feed of openings I was looking through, and it clicked. One of the best parts is that I get to continue my nearly thirteen-year streak of working from home. My office setup has changed as they have added new computers and screens, but that’s okay!
Being Back Home
Perhaps the thing I am most grateful for this year is being back home. During the summer, I moved into a small apartment with some other people looking for roommates. It was lonely and depressing. But my faith grew from the experience. My prayer life took on new dimensions as I prayed for our marriage, relationship, and family. I also got some counseling, which helped me deal with insecurities and transform my deficiencies in self-esteem into strengths in God-esteem. I learned that the Lord loves His children (including you), and he wants us to delight in Him and to give us the desires of our hearts. Sometimes He allows us to go through difficult trials to learn and grow, and sometimes we go through these trials because of our own poor decisions. Whatever it is, turning to Him and aligning our hearts and minds with His will brings us to the happiest contentment we can have this side of heaven.
So this week, no matter what you are facing, my challenge to you is twofold. First, bring your praise and thanksgiving to the One who gave you and the rest of the universe life and meaning. Count your blessings and tell someone else about them, so they can know your joys and think about their own. Second, whatever you are going through that is giving you trouble or strife, bring it to the Lord. Tell Him about what is bothering you, what scares you, and what keeps you up at night. Then ask Him to come alongside you and help you, and then thank Him for that help. He already knows what is going on in your life, but He is waiting for you to ask. When you do, His Word says:
God has already promised that He will help you. So once you have expressed your fears and needs, begin to thank Him for the relief that He is sending you. I don’t know when it will come, and it may not be instant, and it might not be in the form you expect. But continue to thank Him with expectant anticipation because His love and help is coming.
I hope everyone has a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving with all of their family and friends.
“Thanksgiving Day Parade” by martha_chapa95 is licensed under CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/?ref=openverse.