In Everything Give Thanks
“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”1
During times like the ones we are living, I am constantly reminded of the importance of gratitude and the positive effect this has on our attitude and our outlook on the situation and life in general.
Tony Evans gives such a good description of today’s verse, “God says to give thanks in everything. That doesn’t mean you need to give thanks FOR everything. You don’t need to give thanks FOR that bad day. Or FOR that bad relationship. Or being passed over at work. Financial hardship. Whatever it is – you are not to give thanks FOR the difficulties, but rather IN the difficulties. That is a very important distinction, and one I think we often miss. Giving thanks IN everything shows a heart of faith that God is bigger than the difficulties and that He can use them, if you approach Him with the right heart and spirit, for your good and His glory.”
We have all been affected differently during this time, and we do not have control over much of what is happening. However, one thing we do have control over is our attitude. We can choose to live each day complaining and see only seeing the negative, or we can choose to thank God for the blessings he continues to give us daily. Are you healthy? Be thankful. Do you have a roof over your head and food on your table? Be thankful. Do you have children in the home? Model an attitude of gratitude for them. I am sure we could all come up with a list of things to complain about, but what if instead we chose to make a list of things we are thankful for?
God is faithful. He is working even in the unexpected and uncertain situations that arise. He remains in control and cares deeply for us. He deserves our praise and gratitude. Let us choose to be thankful. When we embrace an attitude of gratitude, we can experience the joy that only God can give. This doesn’t necessarily mean that we are happy about the situation, but we can still have genuine joy in Jesus.
Another way of expressing our gratitude to God and experience joy is by serving those around us. It can be a calling a friend to check up on them, sending a note of encouragement to someone, leaving a small gift on your neighbor’s doorstep, delivering groceries to a person who is unable to go out at this time, or many other possibilities. Ask God to show you how he wants you to serve. This will shift our focus from us to others, and it will bring joy and bless you greatly.
Suggested prayer: “Dear God, give me a thankful heart that can see beyond the current situation. Allow me to see your hand and blessings even during difficult times. I choose to give thanks IN everything trusting that you will use even this for your purpose and glory. I love you and praise you in the good times and in the difficult times. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. In Jesus’ name, amen.”
1. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 (NIV).
All articles on this website are written by
Richard (Dick) Innes unless otherwise stated.