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Tuesday November 1, 2016

On days when life runs smoothly, I find it easy to praise God for all the glorious things that He does. On days when things don't go according to my plan, I'm learning how far I still have to go. I have found this to be especially true when grieving the loss of a loved one.

My mind struggled to comprehend the loss of a dear friend last February. Rather than giving thanks, I questioned God and struggled with His response. My friend's son had a baby this year. This would have been her first grandchild. My heart was saddened as I viewed the pictures and thought of what she is missing—and what her family is missing in their lives—due to her death. 

Circumstances like those make it hard to give thanks. Our natural tendency is to focus on the unfairness of it all. If we are not careful, we can become bitter and depressed. Although I still struggle with my feelings regarding the untimely passing of my friend, I have decided to give thanks for my family and my life. I have determined to express my love to them and hold them a little closer. I have determined to seek the peace of God rather than answers. 

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus," says Philippians 4:6-7 (NIV).

"Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus," says 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NIV).

Before we can give thanks in all circumstances, we need to recognize God at work in our everyday lives. Only when we focus on the overflowing abundance of God and the good gifts that He provides—without taking our eyes off Him and focusing on the things we think we lack—can we truly begin to cultivate an attitude of thankfulness in our hearts and give thanks in all circumstances.

Thank you, God, for your peace that guards my heart! Thank you for grace! Thank you for mercy that is new every morning! Thank you for love! Thank you for joy! Thank you for every good and perfect gift from above. 

—Stacie Adams, Bereavement Coordinator (Mount Airy Office)

Mountain Valley Hospice & Palliative Care offers free grief support to the community at large. For more information, contact us today at 336-789-2922 (toll-free 1-888-789-2922).

Tags: Grief Support