Being Thankful through Trials

There are many things I am thankful for. I am thankful God has blessed me with a loving husband, a beautiful baby boy, a warm place to live, and a pillow to rest my head. I am also thankful to be healthy. I am very aware that there are many people who do not have that to be thankful for.

Some people have severe physical or mental disabilities that can affect not only them, but their families as well. Whether the disabilities have been there since birth or were due to an accident or someone else’s actions, does their disability mean they cannot be thankful?

We have all heard stories of someone who has overcome great obstacles. Someone who has beat the odds and survived hard situations. My father is one of those people. I know that without God, my dad would not be alive now. He hurt his back at work when I was twelve. Since then, he has had over forty procedures on his back. He also developed many other health issues that have limited his day to day life. As I write this, he is facing the possibility of yet another surgery. He survived meningitis, and at that time was told that if we had gotten him to the hospital any later than we did, he would not have survived. My dad has lived through all of that. We all know that there is a reason he is alive today. God has a plan for him.

Although my dad had to deal with all of the physical pain and stress of trying to raise a family while disabled, his illness affected the rest of us too. Because my mom worked two jobs to try and make ends meet, my sister and I lost a physically active father and our stay-at-home mother, all in less than a month. As children, we watched our dad age ten years in less than a year. Our family faced many struggles that average families do not have to face––more than I am ready to relive. However, every day I am thankful that we faced all of it. I believe that by facing those problems and overcoming obstacles, it made me grateful for what I have. I did not have typical teen years. It seems these days most teens are given a car and an allowance. I worked after school everyday. I paid for my first car and the insurance every month for it. I bought my own clothes, helped buy food and made my own spending money. I am not going to say my parents did not do anything for me or that they didn’t take care of me, but they did not have the funds to give me the things that many teenagers take for granted. I don’t want pity for my childhood. I am proud of it.

You see, I know I could have lost my father during any of those surgeries. Or he could have been hurt worse than he was. When faced with situations that seem bad, I always try to look to the positive. No, my childhood was not easy. But I had two parents who loved me and would have done anything for me. I had a roof over my head, clothes on my back, a warm bed, and food in my stomach. It pains me to know that there were times in my childhood that I did not appreciate all of the sacrifices that they made for me.

I know there are probably some of you who have a parent or a loved one who has some sort of disability or health problem. I know it is hard to watch a loved one go through that. It is also hard as a teenager to deal with that along with all the other stresses that you face. However, no matter what you face, be thankful. Things could always be much worse. As long as God is by your side, know that no matter the outcome, you will be okay. You may not have a lot of money or fancy things, but one day, you will have riches beyond any that are here on earth.

“But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” 1 Corinthians 15:57

By Sarah J. Ancheta


  1. Sarah, I am so proud of you for the Christian woman you have become and although Dad and I ache for all the things we would love to have given you girls, we realize that teaching you about Christ and his church was the most important thing and everyting else would be alright – and it is!!! Love, MOM

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