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B. We can be thankful even during the most difficult circumstances in life. We see an especially inspiring example of a brave and thankful heart in the story behind one of the church’s thanksgiving songs #788 in our hymnal, Now Thank WE All Our God. This hymn was written during the 30 years war in Germany, in the early 1600’s. Its author was Martin Rinkart, a Lutheran preacher in the town of Eilenburg in Saxony. Now, Eilenburg was a walled city, so it became a haven for refugees seeking safety from the fighting. But soon, the city became too crowded and food was in short supply. Then, a famine hit and a terrible plague and Eilenburg became a giant morgue. In one year alone, Preacher Rinkart conducted funerals for 4,500 people, including his own wife. The war dragged on; the suffering continued. Yet through it all, he never lost courage or faith and even during the darkest days of Eilenburg’s agony, he was...

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