This Thanksgiving let us not only thank the Lord for those things we like and enjoy but also for those things we don't. Much of our lives are spent attempting to circumvent situations and circumstances that God has planned for us. John Piper explains that, Untold numbers of professing Christians waste their lives trying to escape the cost of love. They do not see that it is always worth it. There is more of God's glory to be seen and savored through suffering than through self-serving escape. Paul puts in like this: "Though our outer nature is wasting away, our inner nature is being renewed day by day. For this slight momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison" (2 Corinthians 4:16-17). "Momentary" refers to a lifetime in comparison with eternity. "Slight" refers to suffering and death compared to the weight of everlasting joy in the presence of God. This is what we gain if we hold fast to Christ. This is what we waste if we don't. God designs that tribulations intensify our hope for the glory of God" (From Don't Waste Your Life by John Piper, page 73).
So as we pray tomorrow thanking Him for all the wonderful Providences we have received in the last year, let us also recall the unpleasant Providences remembering that they, too, draw us nearer to Christ and "our hope for the glory of God."