How To Have The Joy of Thanksgiving while Grieving

Thanksgiving is bittersweet for me. I enjoy the time with family and friends, and I enjoy the food. Then there are the moments I remember this was the last holiday spent with my dad. He began his nine-day journey to heaven on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. It was an unexpected and difficult experience, as a sixteen-year-old. It hurt to see my family broken by death. The feeling of loss is heavy on my heart even after so many years.

Loss is part of living. Anytime we lose something of value we experience loss. It does not matter the size. No loss is insignificant, whether it is the loss of a dream, a house or job, a pet or family member or a child gone astray.

With any loss comes grief. We deal with the loss through grieving, and it can hit us at any time. Greif comes in different ways. It can range from feeling sad to intense sorrow, to just an annoyance and back again.

Embrace grief.   Suppressing one emotion, suppresses the others. You cannot suppress the sad unwanted emotions without also suppressing the wanted joyful emotions.

Lean into grief, allowing your feelings to flow. It is in honest part of living an abundant life.

Grief can lead us to thankfulness and joy if we let it. If we are trusting God, we can begin to be grateful for him and his care during the time of pain. We can be thankful for the object of our grief or for the people around us who care. There can be a joy in grieving, but it only comes to an honest heart, turned to Christ.

Is your heart grieving over a loss? Are you having a hard time celebrating with thankfulness? Be honest with God and yourself by embracing the emotions he has given for your use.

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

What is heavy on your heart today? Let me know by commenting below or shoot me an email. (Mary@MaryCaldwell.net) I cannot wait to hear from you!




I am a speaker, writer, and life coach that empowers women to reclaim influence, discover their voice, and achieve success in their life and ministry. I am also, a pastors wife and a mother and teacher to five spirited children. I love the quiet of the morning and good cup of coffee. I relish my alone time before the world awakes.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *