In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 NKJV.
It is very easy, and some would even say necessary to give thanks to God when he gives you exactly what you prayed for. It also isn’t that hard to be thankful to God when we get good gifts from him, gifts we didn’t ask for that we can certainly use. Here is the million-dollar question though, can you still thank God when you get the exact opposite of what you prayed for? Can you still thank him when you believe that you did everything right, but the results were unfavorable? The easy answer is yes, but in reality, it’s never easy.
In January of 2017, my wife and I found out that she was pregnant with twins, a boy and a girl at that. I was extremely happy and so was she and we thanked God. I prayed over her pregnant belly daily and she read scriptures out loud over her belly. At 18 weeks we had to go to the hospital because she was in pain, upon getting there, we were told that the babies were in position for delivery. We all know that is way too early. The doctors consulted and agreed to admit my wife that night and explained to us that, she would have to be in a position on the hospital bed with her legs elevated to stop the babies from coming out, with a goal of getting the pregnancy to 24 weeks. I worked during the day and spent the nights at the hospital with her, I continued to pray and comforted my wife that everything would be fine. The doctors had also told us that if the babies were delivered before 24 weeks there was nothing they could do to help the babies survive. When she was 22 weeks, I got a call that day from the hospital and was told that they could no longer keep the babies in and that my wife was in labor. I left work and she was already in the delivery room when I got there. She had already been prepped for delivery. The babies were delivered, and the doctor swaddled them and handed them to me and left the room. My wife was still out of it due to the anesthesia. I held our twins in my arms and watched them gasp for breath, I mustered every bit of faith I could find in me and I prayed and called on God for help to keep them alive. Shortly after, our daughter (Malia) stopped breathing, our son (Mark) held on. I could no longer hold my tears back, I tried to think of a reasonable explanation, any would do, I couldn’t find one. The holy spirit gave me the above scripture and I asked myself what exactly I was supposed to be thankful for. Meanwhile, our son, Mark was still holding on barely, I looked at him with tears rolling down from my eyes and I whispered, “thank you Jesus.” I told God I didn’t know why I was thanking him, but I kept repeating the words “thank you Jesus” and the more I did, I could feel the weight being lifted off me. Finally, I looked at Mark while I was still in tears, and said you can go to him (Jesus) now and a few minutes later he took his last breath. This was and still is the hardest thing I have had to endure to date. Then, when my wife came to, I had to encourage her because she had quite a few questions.
Romans 8:28 says, and we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to his purpose. NKJV. Take it from me, the best time to thank and praise God is also the time when things are not going your way, when it seems like you got the opposite of what you prayed for. The reason I chose to thank God in that delivery room was simply obedience to his word. I didn’t know why he allowed it to happen, but I know it didn’t catch him by surprise. Even though I couldn’t see it then I know that he has something good for me. If I had stayed in that place of pity and sorrow and decided not to continue to worship and serve God, I will never find out what good thing he has in store for me and why he allowed me to go through that. No, we (my wife and I) don’t have babies yet but our story is far from over. The truth is, if I never gained anything else out of that experience besides getting closer to God it was all worth it for me. For my wife, she gained a medical certification she would otherwise not have had, and she also got closer to our heavenly father. God can and will take a situation that the enemy meant to use to shame and destroy you and turn it around for the best for you. If you are going through a situation right now, give God thanks and praise even if you must do it with tear filled eyes and he will show up right in the middle of your storm and I pray also that he shows you the great things he has in store for you. These are Julien’s thoughts and what’s on his mind.