Thankful for the Forgotten
Today I remember a thousand things for which to be grateful…
I remember friends… Friends who have worked their way deeply into a small heart that is learning to enlarge itself.
I remember late nights… Late nights working towards a degree that is the fulfillment of a lifelong dream.
I remember early mornings… Rising at 5:00 a.m. to teach a classroom full of 5th and 6th graders: students who are easy to teach and even easier to please. Students who make the hour and a half on the road every day worth it.
I remember unexpected trips to faraway places… Meeting strangers and making friends. These are places that won’t soon leave our hearts.
I remember moments… Conversations with family and laughter with cousins: moments well spent, but easily taken for granted.
But not all things that deserve our attention in these moments of gratitude are pleasant. Maybe some of them we would prefer to not recollect. Many of them fade into memory as we purposefully leave them in the past, choosing not to cite these events in our journals or talk about them with friends.
Today I forget a thousand things for which to be grateful…
I forget unfulfilled dreams… Dreams that were of my own crafting and devising. Dreams that would have led my heart astray had I taken the opportunity to satisfy them.
I forget broken hopes… Hopes for better things. Hopes for prayers to be answered and circumstances to change.
I forget the waiting… Long nights, lonely days, endless weeks, dauntless years… The moments stretch into what feels like an eternity. We wait for His movings, but His work seems to be accomplished so slowly.
I forget the tears… Tears for a thousand things. Tears that stung our faces in pain; tears that washed our eyes of sorrow. Salty tears that flowed unbidden and tasted of someone else’s sadness.
I choose to thank Him for the forgotten because I don’t ever want to come to the place when I ask Him only for the pleasant or comforting. I thank Him for the painful and distressing because I know that by drinking from these cups, I will come to know Him more fully. And by coming to know Him more fully, I will be able to stretch out open hands to a world that knows nothing but “forgotten things.”
This simple song by Swedish August Ludvig Storm, (affiliated with the Salvation Army) was the inspiration for this composition and seems so fitting for this day.
"Thanks to God for My Redeemer"
1. Thanks to God for my redeemer
Thanks for all Thou dost provide
Thanks for times now but a memory
Thanks for Jesus by my side
Thanks for pleasant balmy springtime
Thanks for dark and dreary fall
Thanks for tears by now forgotten
Thanks for peace within my soul
2. Thanks for prayers that Thou hast answered
Thanks for what Thou dost deny
Thanks for storms that I have weathered
Thanks for all Thou dost supply
Thanks for pain and thanks and for pleasure
Thanks for comfort in despair
Thanks for grace that none can measure
Thanks for love beyond compare
3. Thanks for roses by the wayside
Thanks for thorns their stems contain
Thanks for home and thanks for fireside
Thanks for hope that sweet refrain
Thanks for joy and thanks for sorrow
Thanks for heavenly peace within
Thanks for hope in the tomorrow
Thanks through all eternity
May we never forget to thank Him for the bitter as well as the sweet.
Wishing a Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!