The Gratitude Of A Missionary

The following is from a missionary in the middle east that I admire! A truly Godly family! (names removed from the post for security reasons)


We are very grateful to God for bringing ******************* back safely from their time in the States. While they were gone and while we sold and packed our belongings, it was a great blessing to be able to borrow their apartment, which was in the same building and directly below ours. We wish to thank them for their generosity to our family.

Since the *** Family was returning, it was necessary for us to move into another apartment. One of our friends from church had rented an apartment for some refugees and they had recently moved out, after finding a more stable place and some work. We were offered the apartment rent-free for the ten days before we return to the US. It was offered to us as a “last -resort” and, although we had other options, I chose to use the place to teach my girls a lesson…sssshhhhh, don’t tell them…they don’t know we had other options!
These accommodations are less than ideal for anyone. The apartment is very rough and very small…a bedroom, a sitting area, a tiny kitchen, and a tiny bathroom. Because the apartment is a ground-floor, we have guests that are staying with us…countless cockroaches, a gajillion and a half ants, and at least one mouse! In the last two nights, ******** has had a daily battle with the ants and I have killed five massive cockroaches. I reassured the girls that, when one roach is seen, there are a million more that cannot be seen!
Let me make it very clear…Do not pity us!!! I chose to stay in this place to teach my girls a very important life lesson—gratitude. None of us ever learns to be as grateful as we should, but this is one lesson they will not soon forget, I pray.
Here is what I am trying to help my children understand… The people staying in the apartment before us were refugees—we are not! They left their homes in fear for their lives—we came of our own will. They left in a rush carrying only what they could in their arms and then lost most of it along the escape route—we have ten, big suitcases of our choice belongings plus carry-on bags that will fly with us in comfort back to America. They had no idea how to get money to pay for their living quarters or to pay for their groceries—we don’t ever have to think of how we will pay for our place to live or for our groceries. They were grateful to have a place, even a place like this—how will we react?
Yes, for ten days and nine nights, we are walking in another family’s shoes. It is a challenge; it is uncomfortable; but, it is so very good for us! Do not feel sorry for us! My prayer is that God will teach us all to be more grateful for the bounty with which He has blessed us and that we will learn why He has blessed us. Gratitude is the fertile soil out of which so many other spiritual fruits grow. We are people who have been blessed so that we may, in turn, be a blessing to the world. The bounty and the blessings we have known must be leveraged for the sake of the Gospel—to get the good news to the nations!
The painful truth is, that all of us are so spoiled! Even the poorest people we know have been blessed beyond measure. What would it look like if God’s people learned to personally live what we find in 1 Thessalonians 5:18“In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” Let us learn to be grateful people. Will you pray for us this week that our girls would be grateful girls and that our family would be a grateful family! Thank you for faithfully praying for us each Friday!




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