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Choosing Thanksgiving

Nov 24, 2014

For most of the world, it was an entirely ordinary day. A Sunday. Nothing spectacular, nothing grand.

For the Cushatt family, however, yesterday was Thanksgiving Day.

Of course, yesterday wasn’t Thanksgiving Day. Technically. But we pretended it was.

I woke up before dawn, children and husband still lost to dreamland. After dressing myself, I headed downstairs to dress the star of the day’s performance in butter, lemon, salt and pepper. Then, sliding the 24-pound turkey into the oven (yes, 24 pounds), I started work on the accompaniment: Mashed potatoes and corn. Chocolate and pumpkin pies. Cherry-pecan stuffing, cranberry sauce, fresh cut vegetables, sweet potatoes. Gravy. Gallons of gravy.

This is what I do every Thanksgiving Day. I invite far more people than I should, and I cook my heart out all day long. There’s nothing I love more.

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, and has been for as long as I can remember. Everyone close to me knows this.

Over the next few days, I imagine many of you will gather at the houses of relatives or friends. You’ll eat more than you should, watch football games and fall into a beautiful late day turkey-induced coma. You’ll savor pie, tell stories, and laugh at each others jokes. You’ll play games, go for long walks (a futile effort to burn off the 2,394 calories you ate), and head back home for seconds.

But tomorrow—Tuesday, November 25 at 7:30 AM—I’m scheduled for surgery. Thursday will bring no feasting, no gathering of friends, no watching football. Instead, I will be lying in a hospital bed. Far from my friends, family and dining room table. Sedated, secluded, hungry.

I find it ironic that the first diagnosis came on the same day in 2010, the Tuesday before Thanksgiving. The phone rang at 8:30 in the morning, moments before I planned to drive to the grocery store to gather enough food for our feast. I started the day filled with anticipation. I ended it consumed with fear.

A world can turn upside-down just that fast.

But this year, fear didn’t show up at our feast. Not even for a moment. Instead, we turned our home into a cancer-free zone. No talk of surgery or illness. No tears or panic or wrestling with unknowns. Instead, for 24 hours, we feasted and shared, laughed and played.

We gave thanks.  

And this is why I believe this will be our most sacred Thanksgiving of all. Because we chose to feast on thanksgiving rather than fear:

  • For friends and family who, without hesitation, moved their Thanksgiving celebration to an ordinary Sunday.
  • For doctors and hospitals and access to both
  • For a faithful husband who loves me more than I deserve
  • For children who call me “mama” and love me in spite of myself
  • For a life so rich, so filled with blessing, I can hardly believe it’s mine
  • For a God who takes my breath away and will never, ever leave

You see, Thanksgiving isn’t a Thursday in November. It isn’t a holiday, grocery list, meal, or gathering of people.

Thanksgiving is a choice. An attitude. A way of life.

Choosing to see. 

Three hundred, sixty-five days a year, not just one.

Happy Thanksgiving, my friends. Wherever you find yourself this week, whatever your life circumstances, whoever sits at your table or is absent from it … choose Thanksgiving.

Your celebration this week isn’t dependent on the calendar or details of your life, but what you choose to feast your eyes upon.

What are you most thankful for this Thanksgiving? 


  1. Nancy Zeiger

    His story through you.

    • Patricia Hunt

      Michele, We thank God for friends like you who share their faith and honesty in both good and bad times, encouraging us too, to hold on to God’s unwavering, unchanging, eternal love and Grace no matter what life throws at us! And our prayers for you and your whole family through this tough time will not waver or stop either! Gods speed to a wonderful person!

  2. Bruce Cross

    I am thankful for PEACE in the midst of storms. I am also thankful for these words of encouragement. Your name WILL be mentioned in my prayers!

  3. Pam Haddix

    Thank you so much for sharing this, Michele. His love, peace, and power poured in you and shining through you give the rest of us a beautiful glimpse of our Savior – and give us a blessed hope. Praying for your surgery and another year full of much to be thankful for!

  4. Linda Lochridge Hoenigsberg

    Of course you know how many “friends” you have praying for you this week and every week you need it. I thought it coincidental that my own “second diagnosis” came in the same month the story of my first one was received by bookstores within the pages of the Chicken Soup for the Soul book. I felt it was also a sign…a chance to practice my faith because He is faithful. Praying for you, my friend.

  5. Lily Kreitinger

    And a very Happy Thanksgiving this day and every day. You are loved.

  6. Paige

    I just listened to Erwin McManus’ sermon on resilience and I thought of you. During your recovery if you’d like to listen, you can download the podcast. Go to iTunes, type in Erwin McManus, choose Mosaic, the sermon title is resilience. He talks about how our struggles produce perseverance and he says perseverance is our hope muscle.

    We are praying for you. Please keep us updated on your progress.

  7. Brady Beshear

    Great post! — I’m thankful for faith, friends and family. AND for your example of ‘one-step-at-a-time’ faith, Michele. Just days ago at the Platform Conference, you were encouraging a person when I stepped up to you to say hello. No one knew of your renewed battle at the time. May your kindness to others boomerang back to you in this time of need!!

    My wife and I are praying for skilled surgeons, and a quick and complete recovery. Also for your husband and family as they serve you and realize the gaping hole left when momma is not well!

  8. Laura Naiser

    I am and will be praying for you and your family, especially tomorrow. This is such a beautiful post. Your openness and honesty is inspiring. Blessings of grace, peace and healing!

  9. Cindy

    Your faith and gratefulness are truly an inspiration.

  10. Patricia @ Pollywog Creek

    I’ve had crohns disease for over 30 years and my GI doctor and I have laughed about how it always seems to flare just before Thanksgiving (so far, no flare this year – thank you, Lord) – forcing me to limit my intake to liquids until the flare passes. I’d certainly choose a different reason to focus on the true meaning of gratitude, but it does provide that opportunity. Michele, you have been and will continue to be in my prayers.

  11. Dawn

    I add YOU to my list of “Thankful for…” this year. The things that you have shared in your writings have been used by God to touch my heart and transform my soul. Thank you! 🙂
    [I’m know I’m not the only ‘cyber-friend’ that will be praying their heart out for you on Tuesday]

  12. Daniela Trinh

    Your words have left me in awe so often during these last months. In awe of God through you, in you. In times when the storms of life have left me in deeply lonely and painful places, your words encouraged and lifted so, so much. Choosing to SEE when a veil of pain seems to hide God, and finding out that He has always been there, and won’t leave. Thank you, thank you for your beautiful messages! I will be praying. Jesus with you, and your family. Much love.

  13. Julie Barnhill

    Another friend here who will be praying for you (and your sweet family) as the days and weeks progress. It seems such a small thing but, I know it’s not. ((((((HUG))))))

  14. Julie Barnhill

    I don’t know if you’ll want to read or have the energy to do so, Michele, but should you decide to pick up a book or e-book in the weeks/months proceeding I can’t recommend one any more highly than this. Surely, he has/is walking a similar path as you and I pray his words can speak life and hope and perseverance. Much, much, MUCHO love.

  15. Linda Pierce

    So very well said, my young friend. Praying for your successful
    surgery and recovery.

  16. Kia Stephens

    So very well said Michele. I am thankful for your willingness to share this season of your life on your blog. I’ll be praying for your complete healing and recovery.

  17. Crystal

    I love you so much, friend. And I’m here ready to jump on a plane whenever you need me there. In the mean time, I’ll be praying and texting and praying some more.

  18. Roger Bodenstab

    I WILL give THANKS in all things! Praying for your surgery and your recovery! May you know how much you are loved by your Heavenly Father!

  19. Helen!

    I love you, my friend! <3

  20. Thad

    Praying for the Giver of Life to comfort you and yours in days ahead.

  21. Romana

    Dear Michelle, I am thankful to you and Michael Hyatt for the podcast you are doing together.
    I wish you a successful surgery and fast recovery! My best wishes and all the best from Mexico,

  22. April

    Michele, this was such a beautiful, touching post! My prayers of love & healing are headed your way. You have touched my heart in a profound way. You have a gift with words, with story-telling. Thank you for sharing it with us!! ❤️

  23. Tonya

    What an amazing reminder of what Thanksgiving should be. What a beautiful story. What a beautiful life, my friend. We have and will continue to pray for you and your family as you enter this next phase. Hugs from NYC.

  24. Randy Cantrell

    Be well. Praying for your best. And for your family, too.

  25. Tim Richter

    Praying for you and your family

  26. Terry Stafford

    Many blessing Michelle. You are most certainly in our prayers. Your perspective and faith are immeasurable. God bless.

  27. Judith

    Wonderful words, Michele. Thank you.

    Prayers and Strength for you and your Doctors all your loved ones.


    New Jersey

  28. Beth Underwood

    What a beautiful post, Michelle. Sending boundless blessings and love to you.

  29. Afolabi

    Jesus gave thanks at Lazarus tomb and said something very profound . Father i thank you because you always hear me…this is your teatimony

    He has heard you! and you will come out on top. The same spirit that raised Jesus from the dead will quicken your mortal body.

    Healing and health belongs to you in Jesus name. Get well dear

  30. Bob Moss

    Hi I’m a pastor –and now an executive with our national church office in Anderson, Indiana. The THIS IS YOUR LIFE podcast is an important part of my life and professional development, and I thank you and Michael for your work.

    Please be assured of my prayers for you both today and tomorrow as you face surgery. The Lord will see you through.

    Bob Moss

  31. Victor Hugo Concepcion


    From my fiancee & I, we send prayers for your speedy recovery and renewed strength. We know and trust that such test shall pass.

    Thank you for the reminding us what Thanksgiving really is.

  32. Mandy

    I’ll be praying for you Michelle! God has you in the palm of His mighty and loving hand! Blessings, a sister a Christ

  33. Erin

    Praying for peace & comfort to surround you & yours throughout surgery and recovery.

  34. Mike Paddy

    praying for your requests. Great post and insights into Thanksgiving! Michael Hyatt asked for prayer for you.

  35. Leslie

    Hi Michelle,

    I only know you through the podcast but wanted to stop by and say that my family & I are praying for you. Whatever the outcome, we know that Jesus is with you and yours. Amen.

  36. Diane Maxey

    Dearest Michelle, may the God of peace reign in your heart and the Great Physician bring healing to your body. I have appreciated your partnership with Michael in his podcasts and have come to know you through them. I like your style, your heart.

    I blog also, and tomorrow my blog “Lefty’s Last Rodeo and the Life After” features a 26-yr-old son of a friend who is having his left foot and leg amputated to below his knee on Monday. It brought a different feeling to this Thanksgiving for me as well. And now you.

    I will be praying for you. –In His love, Diane

  37. Jacob

    amazing post. praying for you.

  38. Elaine allen

    I so appreciate your thoughts here. It is choosing to focus on Him, the creator of all things and the giver of life. Who are we to ask why? Who are we to do anything but worship. Yet we gripe and complain and demand that He”fix this”

    He might, but even if he doesn’t you will have done what you are born to do, made His name great! Praying for you and your family as you go through this with Him!

  39. Jan Smith

    Praying for you now! And as He puts you on my mind in the next months as you walk forward.

    Thanking you for sharing this view of your journey and allowing us to walk with you, to see God’s grace in you and His power showing itself in your life and family. This posting shows me that your voice cannot be diminished; if anything, it is even stronger now. I wish you peace. I wish you physical recovery better than expected. I wish you God’s closeness throughout. And I wish you victory. I wish you quickly to the top of the mountain, overcome with the joy of passing through the darkness and in to the light of knowing God’s faithfulness.

    Keep putting your message out there! You win!

  40. Jim

    prayers for you and your whole family and the medical professionals treating you.

  41. Rick Theule

    As I read this on a cold and snowing Monday night, I can’t help but feel the warmth I’m sure was present in your home yesterday. My prayers are with you Michele, and with your family. May our Lord God grant you all comfort and peace and healing.

  42. Motorcop

    Thankful for this post and the reminder.

    Thankful for the opportunity to have chatted with you in a cold Colorado Springs hotel.

    Thankful for my own family even though I’ll be at work protecting other people’s families.

    Thankful for my God to whom I can pray for you.


  43. Jamie King Clark

    Mrs. Michele:
    Thank you for your post-
    Your message truly did speak to my heart and stomach. { …now I’m hungry.}

    Praying for God’s peace and healing.

    Jamie Clark
    … <…

  44. Jay

    I’m thankful for the ability to have the faith to know that even in the challenging times such as you are going through, He knows our wants, needs and the desires of our hearts. The tangible things we have are nice, but it’s truly thanksgiving every day to know that God provides all we need through our family, friends and His undeniable love for us. I’ll be praying for you!

  45. Kathy Holzapfel

    Such a powerful and poignant post, Michele. Thank you. I follow Michael Hyatt’s blog, and I’m one of many who are lifting you and your family up for healing.

    “Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.”
    Matthew 18:19-20 (NIV)

  46. Jennifer

    Prayers of peace, comfort, healing, direction for the doctors and above all God’s Grace which is sufficient for you. Thank you for you faithfulness and inspiration by the life you lead. Blessings of joy of the Lord being your strength in the days and weeks ahead. You and your family are held in my thoughts and prayers.

  47. Susan Foster

    Loving and praying you through this, Michele!

  48. Pamela

    You have brought a fresh perspective to Michael Hyatt’s podcast, which is how I first became familiar with you. I am
    a believer and frankly a little overwhelmed and crabby about the amount of work that putting
    On dinner for 30 people involves. Thank you for the reminder to be grateful for where I am. Praying for your surgery.

  49. Ilene

    My prayers are with you. May the God of all comfort …comfort you.

  50. David Cooper

    God bless you Michelle. Beautiful writing. I had the pleasure to meet you at SCORRE in Orlando this spring and was inspired by your speech. Praying for your swift recovery!

  51. D Shick

    I know of you through Michael Hyatt’s website and wanted you to know that you will be in my prayers as you take on the next challenge. May God hold you in his arms and guide the surgeon’s hands. Bless you and in your lowest of times take strength in the prayer and support you find from your online friends. Peace.

  52. Jill

    Praying for your quick healing and full recovery, and for your family during this time. You are a blessing to so many; may you be blessed with great health.

  53. Ed

    Michele – thank you for sharing your story. It takes courage and strength to confront this as you have. You continue to be a light in this crazy world. Thanks.

  54. Abby

    So sorry to hear about your surgery, Michelle. Loved this beautiful post, though. After “getting to know” you thru Michael Hyatt’s podcast, I could hear your voice reading these words, especially as you wrote about your beloved family and friends. Thank you for the reminder to give thanks. Saying a prayer for you. <3

  55. Amy

    hokding you and your family up in prayer…

  56. jw

    Best of luck Michele. Thanksgiving is in the heart, not at the table. The family can save you some turkey-you won’t miss a thing. 😉

  57. Mary Caldwell

    Joy and comfort come in quietly resting in God. I pray Gods peace for you and your family.

  58. Shaun

    Wishing you the best. I hope things go well and you’re back on the show in no time.

  59. Victoria

    Dear Michelle,

    I just read from Michael Hyatt’s fb page about you. I know that the Lord is involved in this case. I am praying for you that the Hand of the Lord will work through every event that concerns you this week and beyond. I am praying that even as He has given you peace in your heart, He will be with you, for He promised never to leave you nor forsake you…. Right now, we give him thanks for your beautiful life….

  60. Chris Pacholczak

    Such a courageous example! Wonderful thoughts. Praying for you. -Chris

  61. Christopher R Jones

    Michele – My thoughts and prayers are going to you and your family. This is a terrific post. You did a wonderful job painting a picture of your wonderful Thanksgiving. As a cancer survivor myself, I know what it is like to be thankful for people who are most important. I am wishing you a speedy recovery and look forward to hearing you again on This Is Your Life podcast.

  62. Kathy Kuhl

    Thank you for making time to write this on such a week. I’m praying for you and yours, and have shared these good words. Thanks for your wise words here, at SCORRE in May (where we met), and on the podcast with Michael Hyatt.

  63. Wendy Robinson

    Michele…Bless you for sharing your strength in this time of burden! But more importantly, thank you for sharing your faith. I give thanks for you and what you’ve done to encourage others even as you face uncertainty tomorrow.

    But here is one thing we know is certain…God loves you and his love never fails.

    I’m praying for you and thanking God for your complete healing. ❤️

  64. Dana Mentink

    Thankful for courageous people like you who remind us what is truly important in this world. 🙂

  65. Aaron Burrows


    You are an inspiration and I decree healing over your entire body in Jesus name. May the peace of our Lord comfort you and your loved ones during this time. I look forward to many more posts from you as you are a treasured daughter of God Almighty.

  66. Dee Ann Turner

    I am totally undone by your precious testimony of thanksgiving, courage and strength. I will be praying through the day for you tomorrow.

  67. Leeann

    I will keep you in my prayers tonight, tomorrow, and the following days ahead. Father, be with Michele and her family tomorrow. Give them peace and comfort and give Michele a quick recovery. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

  68. Becca

    Praying for you during this difficult time! Sometimes our most difficult times are when we can most clearly see His goodness. Praying that you feel His love, grace, and comfort especially this week!

  69. jan

    Your thought are lovely. I wish you God’s unfathomable blessing in what tomorrow brings.

  70. Emra

    So beautifully written Michele and so true. None of us know what tomorrow may hold and what a privilege to choose thanks any day. Love and deep prayers for you. Your surgery and family. HE is with you and your family.

  71. Scott

    wishing you a speedy recovery
    God bless!

  72. Anon

    I am Thankful to be ALIVE this Thanksgiving. While my co-workers will be enjoying the celebration with their families, I will be on call with EMS that day giving my time and service to those less fortunate that day as a Thank You to God for giving me one more day…one more Thanksgiving. Only when death knocks upon our door do we remember to pull back the curtains and open the windows to the life around us.

  73. Cherie from Queen of Free

    “Your celebration this week isn’t dependent on the calendar or details of your life, but what you choose to feast your eyes upon.” Chills. Praying for you and those who love you most. <3

  74. Manny


    Thank you for graciously sharing. You and your family are in my prayers.

    “He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul.”

  75. Jeff

    I am thankful for having had the privilege of listening to you and Michael on his webcasts/podcasts, etc. I am thankful for the time and energy you (both) spend in preparation and delivery of consistently excellent, thought provoking material.

    I am thankful that you choose to be so transparent with so many strangers, because you believe that maybe just one person in the whole tribe might benefit from your story. (Of course, it’s never “just one”–but you can’t know that going in, right?)

    I am thankful that I have the opportunity to ask the Lord Who is Healing to wrap His arms around you and ask the Prince of Peace to dwell richly in you and your family during this stressful time.

    I am thankful you have given me an opportunity to consider a tiny fraction of the literal millions things for which I can *choose* to be thankful.

    • Jeff

      We may not know what the future holds, but I am thankful we know Who holds the future.

  76. Deanna

    You are beautiful!
    Lifting you up tonight and in the coming weeks.

  77. Patricia

    As you have said “Thanksgiving is a choice. An attitude. A way of life.” I too celebrated Thanksgiving early this year, a week ago Saturday. It was the best Thanksgiving!

    I remember my Mom’s words; she often said “It’s going to be okay.” Yes, it will be okay. Love will see you through. I am reminded that what we choose for another we choose for ourselves. Here is a prayer from Caroline Myss that I pray (for you and with you):

    “Lord, let nothing disturb the quiet of my time with you. With you, all things are possible. Let your grace hover over me during my days and during my nights. Remind me often that you are everywhere and all life is your creation. Grant your mercy and compassion to those in need. May they be given care, kindness, shelter, and shown the best of humanity. Guide me in my actions and thoughts and let me serve as an instrument of healing in this world.”

  78. Maria A. Karamitsos

    I am thankful for family and friends, and for finally making strides to restore my own health after several years of dealing with issues. For these, I am thankful each and every day. Like you, my brother-in-law is heading into surgery tomorrow at 6 am for a quintuple bypass. He is only 50, but this runs in his family. His mother had a triple bypass several years ago; earlier this year the oldest son had a double bypass, and now my brother-in-law. The two younger brothers are now facing their own fears of “I could be next.” These health issues remind us that life is short. We can dwell on the darkest parts, the mistakes, the should-have beens, or we can embrace the many blessings we do have, and the fullness of our lives, and our hearts. Sometimes we need a gentle reminder, and other times we need a kick in the pants. I wish you well tomorrow, and will indeed say a prayer for you. No doubt you will overcome this obstacle, and embark on a celebration of your restored health, and your abundant blessings. Be well.

  79. Jerry Ferguson

    I’m thankful for my family and our good health.

    What a wonderful post. I am praying for you and your family. May God continue to be with you and your blessings overflow.

  80. Lisa

    Michele, sending you prayers as you undergo your surgery, and lots of love as you embark on your healing journey. I have really enjoyed listening to you on Michael’s podcast. You are a wonderful addition to the show.

  81. Ken Eggen

    Prayers for you. God bless you.

  82. Dean Wisdom

    Praying for you on this surgery. Hang in there!

  83. Pauline

    Hi Michele –

    I came over here via Michael Hyatt’s Facebook posting and your blog post on choosing Thanksgiving was such a fresh breath of beauty and reminder of what really matters.

    Giving thanks for this blog post tonight and holding you and your family and medical team in our family’s prayers tonight from Tehachapi, California. We’ll keep you in our prayers in the coming weeks. May God grant you healing and mercy.

    Much love and prayer,
    Pauline and kids

  84. Angie

    Thank you for reminding me to choose to be thankful all year long and not just on Thanksgiving! You’ll be in my thoughts and prayers! You couldn’t be in better hands! Praying for your comfort and Peace!

  85. Liz Congdon

    Thought and prayers go with you! Thanks for the reminder of everyday thankfulness.

  86. Maya

    Stay strong and hopeful… Just think of this as a step to a greater and happier life.

  87. Janna FitzGerald

    I am thankful for the day I met you – that perky lady in overalls who made me feel welcome in a strange place and who helped me sort through some tough stuff by just sharing and being a friend. You are in my prayers and thoughts. Love to you from across the road. Janna

  88. Kerry

    Praying for your full recovery

  89. Doris Swift

    Praying for you Michele! I shared this post, and it has already given comfort to a friend who is facing brain surgery in the near future. It’s so like you to encourage others as you face your coming days with courage. The joy of the Lord is your strength, and He is the God who healeth thee. Much love and blessings of peace, comfort, healing, and joy to you and your family.

  90. Arlene

    Thank you for the reminder to have a heart of gratitude, no matter the season of life. Prayers for peace, strength, and much grace for each and every hour of each and every minute and for each and every second of this journey.

  91. Jon Becker

    Michelle, what a wonderful reminder of the true meaning of Thanksgiving. I admire your courage. You are in my prayers. Please keep us posted as you are able.

    In Him!

    Jon Becker

  92. Sabra

    I went to my VERY first Women of Faith this year and so enjoyed getting to hear you speak! Love your blog and especially this one. I will be saying a special prayer for you this evening. May God be with you, your loved ones and the doctors and nurses tomorrow as you go through surgery.

  93. Kyle Chowning


    My thoughts, heart and prayers go out to you and your family as you walk these recovery months. May God grant you an abundance of joy in the journey, for in that, many will find strength…including you.

    Godspeed on your recovery. And Jesus, heal her completely!!!

  94. Susan

    Praying for your complete healing during this season of Thanksgiving, Michele. May God bless you and your loved ones.

  95. Ginger

    Sending a big Texas hug your way with prayers for comfort, healing, strength, peace & wisdom. Thank you for sharing such a tender part of your heart, Michele.

  96. Matt Patrick

    I am thankful for those who give of themselves to improve the lives of others. Thank you and Michael for all that you give to those of us who want to learn and grow. Prayers for your quick and healthy recovery and to your family for this time.

  97. Lisa

    Hi Michelle ~ Just wanted to let you know what an inspiration you are to me and so many others. I will be praying for you and your family. God bless you sweet lady! :o)

  98. Jeff Johnson

    Praying for you and your family now, Michele. And, we’ll be praying for you and them, as well as all your caregivers, at every chance on Thanksgiving Day!

  99. Margaret McSweeney

    Michele, May this unexpected “lump” in the road soon be in your rear view mirror. As a two year cancer survivor, I will be praying for you and cheering for you. May God bless you, guide you and protect you on this journey.

  100. Claire McLean

    Praying for you Michele! I love what you do and who you are – you are a woman of hope and courage!

  101. Michelle

    Hi Michele, Beautifully written. Thank you for vulnerably sharing with us. Praying for your surgery tomorrow and for peace and comfort for you and your family.

  102. skipprichard1

    Your words journey from deep in your soul across the miles and implant themselves into ours. Thank you for sharing your powerful thoughts. You have many praying with and for you during this ordeal. Our trials reveal our character, and you have one we all admire. And, I am most thankful for the opportunity to share this Thanksgiving with my wife, who fought cancer and showed everyone around Who really matters. Thank you for sharing your Thanksgiving with us.

  103. Justin Marsh

    Thank u for being so open and honest and sharing ur story with the world. Our Father is smiling on you this day.
    As I listen to u & Michael chat, it feels like we have known each other and are friends. And when friends are hurting, we stand with them. So I pray for a miraculous healing in ur body, for a successful surgery and then a recovery filled with energy, quick healing and a sound mind to keep you on track, filled with gratitude and thanks. Bless you and your family

  104. Micki

    I am blown away by Michele’s faith in this difficult time. May God’s grace be with you and your family at this difficult time. My prayers and thoughts are with you.

  105. Fabio Volante

    Peace, comfort, strength, patience, healing, love & so much more to you , your family , your friends.

  106. Wes

    The Schaeffer 9 have you in our prayers, Michele. (I’m sure Michael will be a gentleman and bring the microphone into your room to record the podcast! 🙂 May you feel the presence of the Lord in this time of struggle.

  107. Nicole

    Thank you for your words-we join in praying for healing, hope and love always for you-

  108. Anders

    I thank God for you! You’re such a fresh wind when you speak in the podcasts!! God’s mighty healing, life and strength over you! Anders Gerdmar

  109. Devon

    Get well soon!!! You truly are doing great things with your life! Thanks for following God!!!

  110. Melanie Coppola

    Dear Michele,
    I so enjoy listening to you and Michael on the podcast.
    My very best wishes to you for your surgery and for a speedy recovery!

  111. Audrey

    I wish I had beautiful words, word that would comfort you, words that would be…perfect. Words that would express perfect solace and perfect strength. Since I don’t have the “perfect” words, I’ll tell you the truth. You are on my heart. I’m praying for you and your family. I’m praying for your doctors. And I’m praying for God to continue to work in a mighty and powerful way in you and through you.

  112. Beth

    Michele, I’m thankful for YOU and how you have inspired me to be a better person. With everything that you have been challenged with this year you are still able to reach out to others and lift them up with your honesty and beautiful words of Wisdom, Faith, Love, and Gratitude. I’m so glad you had your Thanksgiving on Sunday. My heart has been heavy all day today thinking about you and your beautiful family. I’m saying lots of prayers for all of you! We are just right down the street if you need anything! Stay Strong! Lots of Love!

  113. Dan Erickson

    You are brave and inspiring, Michele. Sending prayers.

  114. Jo Saxton

    Love and prayers for you and your family Michele !

  115. Lisa Canning

    I am thankful for you! You helped clarify and remind me that I have a story to share and that it can be helpful to others. I am grateful, so grateful, for the way you use your God given gifts to influence others. I too battled cancer at the very beginning of our marriage and so please know I will be praying for you and for your spouse and family.

  116. Will McLaurin

    Michelle, I have grown to admire you and Michael. His pod cast “This is your life” would anything without you. I pray that your surgery will be successful and your recovery short. I haven’t meet you in person but I know it would be a great honor. God bless on your surgery and we will be praying for you. Rev. Will McLaurin

  117. Ewelina

    I only know you through the podcast but I want to say that your post is really moving. The Bible says: “Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, ‘Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.’And God granted his request.” 1 Chronicles 4:10. I believe these words will be working in your life. My family is in a very similar situation right now and your post gives me strength and I can see how great is our Lord. Greetings from Poland 🙂

  118. Marc Lovig


    I really don’t know you, yet I am touched deeply by your attitude and your story. I am asking God to look over you tomorrow… although you and I know he is already doing that now and of course never stops. Please know you are not alone -not just because Jesus is there at your side, but so are we, us imperfect mortals who share this time together with you on Earth. Including strangers like myself who reach out their hand to hold yours dear sister!

    Your brother in Christ, because of Christ,


  119. Richard Graham

    Thank you Michele for sharing your thoughts, “Choosing thanksgiving instead of fear” is inspiring. May you continue to know the gift of faith, the blessing of hope and the grace, peace and love of Jesus deep within you heart and soul. Praying that God will grant healing and renewal to you and that He will continue to watch over your family, giving them the strength they will need in the coming days .

    I’m not sure of the time difference, its now 7-50am, 25 Nov in Ireland – praying for you and your family now.

  120. Patrick Hegarty

    Praying you get well soon … all the best from Brisbane Australia!

  121. Jane Adshead-Grant

    Dear Michele

    I have only just subscribed to your page having seen you on Michael Hyatt’s podcasts a few weeks ago – what an amazing woman you are. I thank God for all that you contribute and in sharing with us. You are in my prayers this week along with those in my community and I trust that your faith will continue to support you and your family through this time. With love from the UK.

  122. Tara Szen

    Michele…… Although it seems words are minuscule in this situation, I’d like to express my gratitude for what it’s worth… thank you for being an inspiration and light in my life, as well as countless others.

    I am a 28 year old female entrepreneur, wife of 3 years and hopeful-mother-to-be… I admire so much of what you do professionally, but more than anything, your courage to trust the Lord and his plan – it speaks volumes of your character.

    Your ability to be a wonderful mother, a wife, cancer survivor, and still pursue a career you are passionate about is so much more than inspiring – you are a light in the lives of so many, especially women like myself who wish to accomplish a fraction of what you’ve conquered.

    THANKS to you for GIVING this light to others.

  123. El

    Dear Michelle,

    You don’t know me. I don’t know you personally. But I do know that you and your words have touched and moved me. And I hope that my positive thoughts and best wishes will do the same for you.

    Wishing you strength, courage and a speedy recovery!

    The Netherlands

  124. Lisa

    Thank you for the beautiful reminder and heartfelt inspiration. May God fill you and your loved ones with peace, and may He grant you smooth, swift, complete healing.

  125. Ali Luke

    Michele, I’ve been meaning to write to you for a while to say how much I enjoy listening to you and Michael on the podcast — you are both so honest and so positive, and it’s been a real blessing in my life. Thank you!

    You’re in my prayers today — I hope everything will go as smoothly as it possibly can, both with the surgery and your recovery, and that you’ll know God’s presence with you.

  126. Kate

    May God pour out a flood of blessings to guide your surgeon and nurses and speed your recovery. Praying for your absolutely complete healing / recovery. Thank you for blessing all of us with your wonderful Thanksgiving blog! I will choose Thanksgiving!

  127. Jacqui E Smith

    Beautifully shared Michele. I am thankful that we need not wait for a special day to take the opportunity to ‘see’ and be thankful. Thank you for giving so freely and enriching our lives.
    With prayer and blessings for your journey ahead.

  128. Afi Pittman

    Michelle, I prayed for you as soon as I saw Michael’s post about your surgery. Thank God I saw it in time. You and Michael are a blessing to all of us who listen to your podcast. And to the extent that you bless us, I pray that God will bless you and guide your surgery and recovery.

  129. Barbara

    I am thankful for my family. Praying for you, your family and the surgical team today.

  130. cindie

    I am thankful for the blessings of family and friends…of God’s grace and mercy.Praying for you this morning.

  131. Kelly

    Wishing you a speedy recovery. Prayers for family, friends, and your entire medical team today.

  132. Fran Sorin

    Dear Michelle,
    I read your post after Michael Hyatt asked for prayers for you on FB today.
    First, please do know that I am praying for a successful surgery and for a strong and steady healing for you.
    And second, thank you for the magical gift you have given to me –especially because I had no inkling of who you were until 15 minutes ago. Your post has moved me beyond words. With gratitude and blessings- Fran Sorin

  133. Christine

    Dear Michele,
    thanks for this inspiring post! Sending you my very best wishes and thoughts!

  134. Kim Landwehr

    Thank you for all you do. May the Lord bless you with patience, understanding and wisdom during your time of recovery.

  135. Deb

    Thank you again, for fresh reminders of the huge blessings friends and family play in our lives. You don’t know me (Joy Englesmans sister) but I thought I’d comment anyway because I want you to know you are now being prayed for by family in MI. And just so you know, I really don’t like social media all that much (ask my sister how much i check facebook)even though I am a post college small group leader and mentor for Young Life; so the fact that I scrolled down to read your story was no coincidence. You are in good hands; our Healer is a miracle worker and I pray that you find comfort knowing you can rely on His strength and not your own. Blessings and peace to your family!

  136. Sarah


    I just listened to your podcast with Michael Hyatt about what to do when you are waiting. I heard His peace in your voice and it blessed me. Your faith and trust is encouraging and hope-giving. I will pray for your healing and comfort and peace for you and your family during this new time of waiting. And I thank God for you and for your courage.

  137. Kevin

    Praying that God brings peace and comfort to you and yours Michele. Get well soon.

  138. Cheryl Ricker

    Michele, thanks for sharing your thanksgiving with us. I love your contagious faith. I want you to know I’m not only praying for you today, but also for your husband and kids. May you all feel God’s presence in an extra special way. Bless you!

  139. Jill

    Michele, offering thanks this morning for all that you do…both seen by the public and the private moments you hold tight. I am praying for your complete and full recovery. It may take some time, but God has a special plan for each and every moment of these days to come. Praying you will feel His embrace and peace throughout it all. Know that you’re covered in prayer from a friend in Asheville, NC. xxx

  140. Karim

    Michelle: I have enjoyed your involvement with Michael’s podcasts, and I am praying for you today. I am a convert to the love of Christ from Islam ( and I think His love has the power to heal and restore 🙂

  141. Jody Noland

    I am thankful for YOU. Whether it was your closing talk at Launch or SCORRE (during which it took everything in me -twice- not to audibly sob) or your inspiring talk at Platform or your humble and kind encouragement to me 1:1, you have made a huge impact on me. I remember your words and your message. Thanks for being authentic and inspiring, and for cheering others on! Praying for you!

  142. Misty Gilbert

    I am praying for you today my dear friend! Ever since I met you last year at The Platform Conference 2013, you have had a special place in my heart and mind. I loved your speech then. I love your courage and fortitude for life. I love how you share with us your journey. You are an inspiration and I love you!!! May you have peace and comfort today knowing that many prayer warriors are fighting on your behalf. May God give you the strength that you need today…for you and your family. Prayers as you embark on this day for safety and the results you need from this surgery. Believe!

  143. Craig

    Thank you for sharing your very personal story. Many will be touched and moved by your loving and positive insight and perspective. For those of us that are not in your situation your story helps us put things in perspective and evaluate our priorties. We all have many more blessings than we realize. Reading your story and connecting with you this morning is one of mine.
    I will pray for you and your family.
    Happy Thanksgiving and God bless.

  144. Sherry

    Just “meeting” you for the first time today through a prayer request from Patsy. I was blessed by your article, Michele. Though my grown sons have chosen not to follow God right now, we can all choose what we are most thankful for this Thanksgiving! I plan to incorporate that into our day!

    You are most likely out of surgery now and I pray, “Oh, Lord our God, please grant Michele the peace that passes understanding today. Help her know Your Presence carrying her and watching over her recovery and giving her a new, clean bill of health so she can get back to the daily God works of Glorifying You in all she does. ” In Jesus’ Name, Amen

  145. Digna Kelly

    I am thankful for your post. Sending a prayer for you and your family,asking our awesome God to heal you.

  146. Ellen Chauvin

    Michele, Thankful this year for these beautiful words of yours, reminding us that thanksgiving is not a day, but a choice! Lifting you in prayer!

  147. Sharon Hanson

    Thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.I attend Women of Faith every year in St. Paul, Minnesota. a
    favorite thing of thing of mine to do. With those people praying for you we know that God is listening to their prayers. I hope and pray all went well.Today!

  148. Tamie

    Thank you for sharing with us. God bless!!

  149. Lara

    Michele! What a beautiful piece. I heard about you via Michael Hyatt. I just wanted to reach out and let you know that you are in my prayers (although I’m not a devout Christian, I AM a believer in something bigger than myself and a human being just like you). You will be in my thoughts and I send you peace, love and healing vibes.

  150. Shelia

    Thank you for taking time in the midst of giving thanks and taking bold, brave steps, to give us a glimpse inside your beautiful soul. May God protect and bless you and your dear family during this interlude. I am thankful for you.

  151. Julie Kaye


    Thinking of you and hoping for a good recovery for a very special person who is monumentally loved.

  152. Rob Johnson

    Get well soon and God Bless you and your family.

    Coach Rob

  153. Vicky Cox

    It’s late. But I wanted you to know that I’m thinking of you now Michele and praying for you. I’m praying for rest, that the doctors will manage the pain, that God will encourage you in your fears and remove anxiety, that your family will be able to experience His peace. You don’t know me. But you have been an incredible encourager to me. God bless you now.

  154. Nick Pavlidis

    Wow, praying for your speedy recovery Michele. There’s so much that I’m thankful for, but most of all this year I’m thankful for my wife’s love and my kids’ smiles.

  155. Kathie

    Love your post and I am praying!

  156. Angie Latimer

    Michele, I have so much to be thankful for, but most of all I’m thankful for you and our friendship. You call me your sister and I’m honored to be in your family. I’ve asked my ten plus friends to pray for you and they are asking 10+ people to pray also. With excitement and anticipation we are waiting for God to continue doing exploits in your life and health. By the way, I was diagnosed in November 2012, with liver cancer, two days before Thanksgiving too. I’m still here singing His praises!



  1. My First Post-Cancer Interview: “When Life Becomes Undone,” with Dr. Juli Slattery | Michele Cushatt - […] Before November 25, I was healthy. Put-together. I didn’t have obvious scars. I didn’t carry around the physical evidence…
  2. An Altar of Thanksgiving | Michele Cushatt - […] It’s been one year since that day. Tuesday, November 25, 2014. Two days before Thanksgiving, when a nine-hour surgery carved…

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