GET TOGETHER- Always Giving Thanks
1Th 5:18 In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
This past Sunday morning during our service we had four of our women take just a short time and share some things that they were thankful for. One shared that she was thankful for the Holy Spirit. I am thankful for the Holy Spirit as well. Others shared how God had brought them through some very challenging times. And some of the things that God had brought them through were very challenging situations.
I guess that it was in 1991 when a good friend gave me a copy of the book Prison to Praise by Merlin Carruthers that I first became acquainted with 1Th 5:18 In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. The book really stressed how important that it was to give thanks in all situations. Now I am not one that believes that God predetermines people to go out and to live in sin. I don’t believe that God is in the business of causing people to be sick. As a New Covenant believer, I believe that Jesus came that we might have life and life more abundantly. On the other hand, we do face adversity in this fallen world. We do face situations and circumstances that are a result of the fall. And we do face some situations that we might find it hard to give thanks in. But we are called to give thanks to God in all situations.
There are many things that we can thank God for while we are going through a tough situation. First, we can thank God that He is in the situation with us. He has promised us that He will not leave us: Heb 13:5 Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”(NKJV)
We can be thankful that we are His children and that He loves us. 1Jo 3:1 ¶ Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore, the world does not know us, because it did not know Him.
(NKJV) We can be thankful for the blood of Jesus Christ that has washed away our sins. Ro 5:9 “Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.”
I don’t know about you, but I am thankful that I am not going to Hell. Jesus spoke about Hell quiet often. He described Hell in this way as a place “Mr 9:44 “where ‘Their worm does not die, And the fire is not quenched.’ There is only one way to not go there. It comes by repenting of your sins and putting your faith in the shed blood of Jesus Christ to save you.
I am thankful also that I know that I will live forever. Jesus said it like this in Joh 11:25,26 “Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. “And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?” I can remember some Thanksgivings when I didn’t believe and didn’t know where that I would spend eternity. You or someone that you know may be there today. You may be like I was think that you had committed too many and too terrible of sins to be forgiven. Jesus wants you to know whether it is you, or someone that you are praying for that there aren’t too many and that they aren’t too bad for the blood to cleanse.
I think the key to being able to give thanks in all situations is being born again and knowing that God is with you. If you have been born again give Him thanks not just this weekend, but all the time. And remember what the Apostle Paul said in Col 3:17 “And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.”
Let Us Pray
Lord Jesus there is not enough room to list all that we could thank You for. We do thank You that you have positioned us to be a people of Thanksgiving. On this Thanksgiving weekend help us to give You thanks and praise for who You are, what You have done and what You will do in the future.
In Jesus Name