Thanks… for suffering.

I had a conversation with a friend a couple of months ago about suffering.  He said, “We shouldn’t choose suffering. That’s just foolish.  We accept suffering when it comes to us.”

A couple of years ago, we decided to host a Thanksgiving dinner at our house and while all the hoopla of roasting a turkey was taking place in the kitchen, one of us took my camera around to each person and videotaped our responses to this question: “What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving?”  I never did end up accumulating the videos and now they’re just sitting as .avi files in the abyss of my computer.  The other day while I was cleaning out my files, I stumbled upon these videos.

First of all, I swear it only was only 2008, but we all looked so young and carefree.  Life has a funny way of aging us, one day at a time.  But some things never change.  As the camera-handler of the moment came to me to get my thoughts on what I was thankful for that particular season, without much hesitation, I proceeded to say, “This season, I am thankful for suffering.  It’s through suffering that I am refined as a human being…”

There is much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving season of 2010.  But if I had to pinpoint one thing I am most thankful for, it would be, yet again, suffering.  I can’t say that I’ve suffered in the way of illness or significant loss, but my heart continues to suffer because of my stubbornness in grasping much in this life.  Trust me, I don’t go around wishing that suffering would befall my life.  But the more I uncover my self, the more I see the depths of depravity in my heart and that inevitably causes much grief.  It’s a grief that I know I must experience in order to grow as a human being.  It’s the kind of suffering that I know I must go through to be pruned.  Perhaps I will always suffer as long as I am on this earth.

But take heart, God has overcome this world.


2 thoughts on “Thanks… for suffering.

  1. I said something similar when we went around the table saying what we were thankful for… Something about the trials and tribulations of 2010 and how they’ve molded me and taught me so much about myself.

    Ok, really now, I’m gonna stop rambling.

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