Along with the rest of the country, this week I have been considering all of the things in my life that I am thankful for. As I was pondering all of the many blessings in my life I happened upon this quote by C.S. Lewis: “We ought to give thanks for all fortune; if it is good, because it is good, if bad because it works in us patience, humility, & hope.”
So, we are to give thanks for our bad fortune? This thought intrigued me, so I began to consider the reasons why I might be grateful for the trials in my life as well as the blessings.
Isn’t it strange how we sometimes take for granted all of our blessings and focus only on our trials? Abraham Lincoln said “We can complain that the rose bush has thorns or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.” We have the power to choose how we will view the events in our lives…
As we choose to view the trials in our life as blessings we begin to understand and be receptive to the lessons that they are meant to teach us. While this may be difficult to do while we are experiencing them, with the passage of time we usually find that our trials are great learning experiences.
As I reflect on the trials that I have experienced throughout my life I recognize that they have taught me things I could not have learned in any other way. They have taught me to be more patient, humble and resilient. They have shown me how to be more compassionate and empathetic to the suffering of others. They have compelled me to trust in and rely completely on the Lord and have increased my faith in Him as I recognize that my trials have often been blessings in disguise.
My trials have created the person that I am today. I would not trade the pain or misery that they have caused if it would mean losing the lessons that they have taught me or the person that I have become because of them. So while I don’t think I would ask for trials to come into my life, I am grateful that they have come. So this Thanksgiving I am thankful for my blessings and my trials.