Giving Thanks in Difficult Times

I know, as Christians we hear and read that we are supposed to be thankful for everything. And that includes the good and the not so good.

I’ve had some difficult things in my life and I’m sure you have too. Three of the most difficult include the death of my father to lung cancer, being diagnosed with melanoma myself, and trying to survive when my husband was unemployed.

How did I thank God? I have to honestly say that I may not have been as thankful while I was going through each situation as I am now. As I look back and see God’s faithfulness surrounding each moment it helps me to be more ready to thank Him as I’m going through a hard time.

Three Difficult Times and My Thanksgiving:

My Dad’s Cancer: Even though it was the hardest thing I’ve yet to do, to say good-by to my daddy, I can now see that God used him in an amazing way to bring others to Jesus. People rededicated their lives to Christ and many more came to accept Him as their Savior for the first time. I know that daddy will receive a soul-winners crown one day in heaven. Oh and heaven . . . I also know I will get to see him again one day!

My Diagnosis of Melanoma: While I was going through surgery, test, and then more test I had to keep telling myself that God was in control, no matter the outcome. Was I frighten? Yes! But now looking back I can say without a shadow of a doubt that God was with me the entire time. This has increased my faith because now when something difficult comes my way I can rest on the assurance that God will be with me then also.

Husband’s Unemployment: You know things are bad when you are praying for money for gas and toilet paper. Yep, it was that bad at times. Those were some of the most difficult days because they ran together to create months of despair. But each day I got up and read “Jesus Calling,” by Sarah Young and made a conscious decision to trust God–no matter what my circumstances looked like at the moment. Looking back at how He provided for us and then blessed us with employment beyond what we ever dreamed I know in my heart that God was working and continues to work in our lives.

Yes, it’s hard to be thankful in the hard things, but Paul was right when he wrote, ” . . . giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,” (Eph. 5:20). We are to give thanks always and for everything. We are in His care, under His management. We are His sheep and He is our Good Shepherd. He will and does take care of us and we need to remember and have faith in Him to do so.

What are some of the difficult things you have gone through and thanked God. We all have our stories and testimonies of God’s faithfulness. What a joy it is to share and encourage others!


Scripture from the ESV (English Standard Version)
pictures courtesy of

Beth Fortune

Beth has a passion for God's Word. Through her writing and speaking she allows the heartbeat of the Father to flow through her words. As an award-winning writer she’s a contributing writer with Christian Devotions and has had stories published in two "Chicken Soup For the Soul Book" Series in addition to other anthologies. Some of her articles have been published in Focus on Family’s "Thriving Family" magazine and Dr. Charles Stanley’s "In Touch" magazine. With a degree in Ornamental Horticulture she loves gardening and enjoys giving gardening talks to churches, schools, and community groups but her real enjoyment comes from sharing God's truths and encouraging others. She and her husband live in Mauldin, SC where they are in a season of caregiving for her father-in-law in the home. A diffiult season, but one in which God continues to show His grace. You can visit her at

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  1. We have so much in common, Beth! My father died from lung cancer. I had stage 4 melanoma on my scalp. My husband and I endured his unemployment many years ago. God is good. He is faithful. Thanks for posting this inspiring word.

    1. Oh my Joann, we sure do have much in common. I, like you, have experienced God’s goodness and faithfulness. Glad we have continued to press through–and be thankful–even in difficult times! Thanks for sharing with me! Beth

  2. Thanks for sharing such concrete examples, Beth. Sometimes it is easier to see after the fact than in the midst of the storm, even when we know He is there!

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