All Posts By

Jessica Schneider

For This I am Thankful

| November 20, 2017

Thankful for You

Fall 2015 marks a season in my life that I will never forget. It was a season that once held tragedy, but marks the beginning of me coming to understand the unending love that Christ offers at a much deeper level.

I will always remember laying in the hospital bed crying as the nurse came in and asked me if I was okay. No, I am not okay, I thought. I remember wondering how I would see my 18-month-old son, Charlie, for the first time without bursting into tears. I remember having a hard time getting out of bed for a few days, and having to remind myself to get up, brush my teeth, take a shower, and eat.

Thankful In All Circumstances…?

Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you (1 Thessalonians 5:18 NLT). Surely God didn’t mean to be thankful in the reality of the miscarriage that I had just had, with a baby I didn’t know I was carrying.

Well, actually that is exactly what He meant and He flat out asked me to be thankful. I never had the chance to celebrate the little life with a shower, or experience the joy of wondering if I was carrying a boy or a girl.  I will say that we did end up naming the baby Finley, meaning “fair warrior”, I am convinced the baby was a girl. On this side of heaven, I will never know, because I only knew death for this child. I will be honest, I was unsure how I would ever be thankful in that circumstance but as I came home from the hospital and began what felt like a new normal, my arms felt empty but the gratitude in my heart slowly grew.

Gratitude Grows Out Of Love

Thankfulness seemed like an odd emotion to grow in this time of loss, but it did, and it was overwhelmingly good. Just as I remember the pain, I also remember my husband who wouldn’t leave my side in the hospital for the night we were there, and our closest friends who came and sat with us. I remember being surprised by the gratitude I felt in the aftermath of such loss.

I felt gratitude as Charlie willingly cuddled even as I felt like there should be another child cuddling in my other arm. I was thankful for the outpouring of love and care we received from our friends. I was honored to be able to tearfully pray out of the same pain for a woman in our small group as she experienced a miscarriage shortly after me. And I rejoice for the love and comfort I felt from God at a deeper level than ever.

He was so good to us.

God is Good

I remember preparing dinner in my kitchen one night and weeping with gratitude as “Desert Song”, by Hillsong was playing. “All of my life, in every season, you are still God, I have a reason to sing, I have a reason to worship.”

God was still God, and He was good despite my circumstances being good. For this I am most thankful.

After the miscarriage, the Fall continued to hold an incredible amount of uncertainty, but with that uncertainty a truth was carried. The truth that there was a loving Father who never left us when we walked through this difficult time. And, this was the truth that God willingly entered our pain with love.

I will always remember the child that is with Jesus surely running through the fields of heaven. But I am thankful that in the broken, there is beautiful and there is God, and He is good. That is good.

A Prayer of Thanksgiving

God, gratitude is a gift, but we are living in tough times, and times when it can be hard to have hearts of gratitude and of thanks. But being thankful in all things is Your will for us, and part of the fruit that comes from Your Spirit that lives in us. That can be such a hard truth, but we thank you that you are with us. Help us to sing Your praise no matter what season we are in, because You are good because You ARE good. Help us to be aware of the beauty in the brokenness, so we can look to you in thanksgiving. And when we can’t see the beauty, may we take our eyes off of our circumstances, and look to the cross and Your resurrected son Jesus. Amen.

What are you thankful for this holiday season?

Share with us in the comments below.

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