The late Sara Frankl
Sara has inspired me to learn to choose joy every day.
Sara faithfully shared her gratefulness to God in the midst of a terminal illness that kept her in constant pain for more than the last fourteen years of her life. She was honest, open, real. She, like Jesus, "learned obedience through the things which [s]he suffered."
I’ve learned to appreciate the simplicity in my moments. I’ve learned that being thankful in everything is more important than being thankful for something. I want to be grateful for everything in my life, not just the special moments. ~ Sara
Sara could not leave her home for years, due to the need for continuous purified air to keep her alive, and so she could not spend holidays with her family. She could not eat food brought to her from family gatherings, because she had so many food allergies that were deadly.
Yet Sara was grateful. Two years ago around Thanksgiving, she wrote about how thankful she was for the good things in her life.
Sara's acceptance of her illness from God's hand as His divine purpose for her, whether she understood it or not, is expressed in the following paragraphs. (Honestly, she sounds just like me in the first two paragraphs!)
I am simply grateful. I appreciate my life because it’s the one He has given to me, and I don’t want to waste a moment of it wishing for anything else. ~ Sara
I always believed I had that faith… but mine was a faith of conditions. I had faith He would take care of me, but I assumed that meant I would be cared for with good health. I had faith that I would prosper, and assumed that meant my career would follow a good path. I had faith that He wanted the best for me, and assumed that meant my life would unfold in a way I envisioned.
But as the years progressed and I lost more and more of what I thought defined me...I realized that being a servant meant all or nothing. A line was drawn in the sand and I had to choose my fear, or I had to choose to completely trust Him. It had to be an all or nothing choice because one cannot exist if the other is true.
I chose to trust, and I’ve never looked back. I can be tired, I can be frustrated by my circumstances and exhausted from the pain, but I am never fearful of what is to come because I know that He is in control. I have faith that He will take care of me, and He has given me fortitude and peace in my heart as I face the challenges my body inflicts on me. I have faith that I will prosper, and I have been blessed with plentiful friends who walk this journey with me. I have faith that He wants the best for me, and He shows me that daily by using my life in ways that serve others--being there in small ways I would never have been able to if my life had unfolded the way I envisioned...
If Jesus was a servant, if he lost everything to come to Earth in the form of a baby who had nothing more than love to give, why would I assume to deserve more? ~ Sara
Sara's doctrinal beliefs are far different than mine, but in the few articles I have read, she has taught me her one little word for 2011: Praise.
Sara is gone now, but her exhortation lives on. This Thanksgiving season, will you join me in the simple praise she modelled... by yielding yourself in new, tangible ways to the One Who knows best for you? ...The One Who has a purpose greater than your own plans? ...The One Who "will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ"?
“The world has yet to see what God can do through a man who is totally yielded to Him.” ~ D.L. Moody