Blessed is really the only word I can think of when I think of my parents. I am blessed to still have them and I am blessed by who they are. Both of my parents have had cancer. My mom battled between my junior and senior year of high school and my dad battled my freshman year of college. I think one reason I have a great relationship with my parents is because at the time of a young person’s life when he or she wants to rebel and go his or her own way, I was helping my parents walk through some of their hardest days. I’m thankful that God saved me from my rebellious heart. I’m also thankful for what I learned about suffering. Chemotherapy is terrible and my parents were really sick. But Jesus’ suffering on the cross in our place was so much worse. While thinking about the pain my parents went through brings tears to my eyes, thinking about the beatings and pain that Jesus went through moves my heart with deep gratitude and an emotion I’m not really sure how to describe. I’m also thankful for the hope and comfort God gave me and my parents in those days. His presence was sweet. Second Corinthians 4:16-18 became a footing for us: “Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” And I’m thankful that both of my parents are alive today. God blesses us to be a blessing to others and I see that demonstrated in their lives so deeply. They are two of the most generous and loving people I know and I love them with all of my heart.