I came across this story some years ago but somehow had forgotten all about it until I saw in a sermon I was reading. It is a moving story about thanksgiving.
While on a short‑term missions trip in 1996, Pastor Jack Hinton from New Bern, North Carolina, was leading worship at a leper colony on the island if Tabango. There was time for one more song, so he asked if anyone had a request. A woman who had been facing away from the pulpit turned around.
“It was the most hideous face I had ever seen,” Hinton said. “The woman’s nose and ears were entirely gone. The disease had destroyed her lips as well. She lifted a fingerless hand in the air and asked, ‘Can we sing Count Your Many Blessings?'”
Overcome with emotion, Hinton left the service. He was followed by a team member who said, “Jack, I guess you’ll never be able to sing that song again.”
“Yes I will,” Jack replied, “but I’ll never sing it the same way.
Our landlord and next door neighbor suffered a major stroke some 8 years ago. He is homebound and spends his time is a recliner, wheelchair and hospital bed. He only gets out to go to the doctor or get his hair cut. He is an avid reader and very good conversationalist. I have never heard him utter one negative word about anyone. He loves people but he spend 95% of his time alone because people are too busy to drop in. I had just undergone a surgery and was at home recuperating: He and a friend of mine got heavy on my mind so I went over to visit with him. He is very considerate and knows I am anxious about my friend who suffers from stage four cancer. He ask me how he was doing and I said, “Not good. He is nauseated 24/7 and he has not had a good day in weeks. I confessed, “I get discouraged over been house bound for two weeks and then I think of my friend Kenny and I am ashamed, I have a lot to be thankful for.” Without a moments hesitation, he said, too. “I do too“! My heart took a spin: WOW! “He is thankful and I’ve been feeling sorry for myself.” As that moment I did not feel that I had to open the door to leave, as small as I felt, I could go under the threshold like a bug or mouse.