I Thessalonians 5:18 (NLT)
Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.
Life has been challenging and full of changes for our family. This may describe your life experience too. I have been broken and recreated by the Lord as He continues to mold me and shape me in who He designed me to be. In this process of renovation and renewal, sometimes we lose sight of the fact that we are in the midst of a process much larger than we can see and being prepared for something greater than we can imagine and the magnitude of possibility called potential that is coming in our life. The enemy will do everything in his limited power to dissuade, discourage and defeat God’s Children to steal, kill and destroy the very thing that the Lord is doing in our life. Seasons of seemingly endless sowing will produce a harvest. It has to according to the Word, Will and Way that is God. We just have to continue to hold on that anchor of hope until God is done turning every detail of our life for His Good. Fear leads to doubt. Worry brings anxiety in our life as our problems become bigger than potential and weight the option of giving up as if it were a viable one.
Today is the time change when we spring ahead and lose one precious hour of sleep. Let’s be real people, who doesn’t miss that extra hour? I begin to long for it back when the reminder pops up that it’s coming and to be ready. I am not ready. I like the way it is. I don’t want to be tired and uncomfortable. My husband and youngest daughter love the time change. They love having more hours of light in each day. They are thankful when the time change comes because it is worth the discomfort to gain the extra sunlight. The craziest part about it is they are the two members of our family who hate change the most – go figure. The Word of God says, “Be thankful in all circumstances…” I have not been. Not only with this whole daylight savings time thing or with all the changes in our life. I feel odd and out of place in my own existence. I do not know how to reclaim normal. Sadly, I have not been thankful either. So today when I got up, I decided to be thankful. It is God’s Will for my life so rather than trying to fix everything that is out of place and bothering me, I will just thank God for His Plan and Process in my life.
Hebrews 12:28 (NLT)
Since we are receiving a Kingdom that is unshakable, let us be thankful and please God by worshiping him with holy fear and awe.
“I have heard there are troubles of more than one kind. Some come from ahead and some come from behind. But I’ve bought a big bat. I’m all ready you see. Now my troubles are going to have troubles with me!” – Dr. Seuss
Who doesn’t love Dr. Seuss? I have found more wisdom in his quotes than most other people. I love that he didn’t take life all that seriously. He found simple solutions to the complex creation of man. I have a big bat. It is called thanksgiving. It has the power to knock my problems out of the park. It can push back the enemy if I choose to keep swinging it. The Kingdom of God is unshakeable. His Power is unquestionable. He is All-Powerful with nothing and no one greater. He is Sovereign so it really doesn’t matter if we believe it or not – it doesn’t lessen His Power. God is constant and He does not change. If you believe in God and have a relationship with Him – this should not be any less than complete and total peace and comfort for your life. That means that His Power is working for you. You are established in His Unfailing Love. His Grace is sufficient for you. His Power is working in your weakness. Day by day, His New Mercy is renewing your strength and resolve to know Him more. Thanksgiving and praise to God in each day identifies as Kingdom members who are unaffected by the comings and goings in this life as we wait for forever. What you are experiencing may be painful but it is not fatal according to God. What is breaking you will not leave you broken but is giving the Lord the opportunity to heal and complete you. Thanksgiving to God turns the table on the enemy and forces him to retreat. Then our troubles will have trouble with me – more importantly with the One who is greater that lives in me.
Psalm 100:4-5 (NLT)
Enter his gates with thanksgiving; go into his courts with praise. Give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good. His unfailing love continues forever, and his faithfulness continues to each generation.
Thanksgiving in the midst of change, opposition or adversity is the declaration of faith that God is good. The Lord is good even when I don’t like the circumstances of my life. I trust that He is making good on His Promise to perfect that which concerns me. (Psalm 138:8) I believe that He is making good out of every detail of my life. (Romans 8:28) This is the declaration of thanksgiving in my life not that I am happy about problems or troubles but that I know my God is working miracles in my midst even when everything seems to be a mess. Give thanks and praise His Name. My thanksgiving is associated to His Name. I am identifying Christ’s Lordship in my life and that I believe it to be bigger than what I am presently enduring. His Unfailing Love continues forever. He has not abandoned me but comforts me in the midst of certain situations that I do not understand. His Faithfulness continues – it goes on and on and on in my life. Thanksgiving says that I believe that way before I can see it. It takes my praise and wraps it around the anchor of hope that secures my soul. (Hebrews 6:19) It reminds me who I belong to, how much He loves me and what He has promised for my life.
Psalm 56:12-13 (NLT)
I will fulfill my vows to you, O God, and will offer a sacrifice of thanks for your help. For you have rescued me from death; you have kept my feet from slipping. So now I can walk in your presence, O God, in your life-giving light.
Thankfulness keeps us in right standing with God. It identifies Jesus as our Lord and Savior saying that He is enough. We are thankful for His Love and Sacrifice. I know that even when everything falls apart or I feel lost and confused that I can step into the Presence of God. In that place, everything changes inside of me even if nothing changes around me. I feel peace and joy that supersedes the problems that I face. The sacrifice of thanks tells the Lord – You did it before and I know that you will do it again.
Psalm 105:1 (NLT)
Give thanks to the Lord and proclaim his greatness. Let the whole world know what he has done.
When we choose to be thankful and literally give thanks to the Lord in a day. The day is immediately changed from the inside out. Such a proclamation allows the Greatness of God to permeate the atmosphere of our life and His Power to change the circumstances to align us with His Word, Will and Way. To grumble and complain only discredits our God and voices our disbelief – this slams shut the door that once let His Glory fill our life with the good things that His Abundance brings. To let the whole world know what God has done and is doing in our life by giving thanks is more convincing than persuasion or discussion. They want the peace and joy evidenced in our gratitude to God the Father and Jesus His Son. I choose to give thanks to God today for every detail of my life good and bad. I have decided that His Unfailing Love is pursuing me and I will open the door. My troubles are not bigger than my God and I have a big bat with thanksgiving written on it that I will be swinging to prove it. Who knows? Today might be my day to hit a homerun! Either way… I win!
Ephesians 5:20 (NLT)
And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.