Paul gives us some standards for Christian living in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-22, but the one most appropriate for this time of year is verse 18. “In everything give thanks for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” In everything, give thanks, sometimes easier said than done. When the doctor gives you his prognosis, when your child has an accident or is in financial trouble, when the car dies on a dark deserted road, give thanks? Not always the first thing to pop into our heads. Thank you Lord for this disaster, but … disasters make us grow, and grow stronger. If you don’t exercise your body, it will grow weak and eventually atrophy. Same with your faith. He knows where you are and what you need and He will supply what you need at just the right time. While He may be strengthening you through trials, He may also be strengthening the faith of someone who is watching how you handle your difficulties. Give thanks in all things, it is His will for you. Look at your trials as another blessing. Compared to the rest of the world, as Americans we are ridiculously blessed. I don’t know if God still loves America, but He certainly continues to bless it. Take time, not only this Thursday, but every day to thank Him for all of your incredible blessings, both good and not so!