Thanks for a wonderful International Conference! We had a great weekend with the international worker who visited us. Please know he left very encouraged after our time with us. Thanks to all who helped make the weekend a success!
Speaking of giving thanks…Thanksgiving is just a short time away! That brings the following verse to my mind: “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thess. 5:18 (ESV)
Why would the Apostle Paul tell the Thessalonians (& us), to give thanks in such a way?
Here are a some of the reasons:
God is worthy of our thanksgiving, all of the time. He has done immeasurably more than we could ask or imagine in giving us His Son (see Eph. 3:20-21).
Giving thanks in all circumstances forces us to look for things to be thankful for, even in extremely difficult circumstances. Perhaps giving thanks is not even about our circumstances as much as it is about God’s everlasting presence and faithfulness to us in Christ.
Giving thanks reminds us that God is the giver of every good gift (see James 1:17). When we see the Father behind every good gift, it’s a reminder to us to thank our kind and gracious Father who takes care of His children.
Giving thanks is God’s will for us in Christ. That’s what He wants us to be doing. That’s reason enough!
When we do the opposite of giving thanks, when we’re ungrateful, bitter, and grumbling, we aren’t shining the light of Christ and let’s face it, we’re generally miserable people who folks don’t want to be around. That’s not a good thing nor is it a good witness!
Giving thanks helps us to rejoice (1 Thess. 5:16) and be joyful.
As A.B. Simpson, the founder of the C&MA said, “Begin to rejoice in the Lord and your bones will flourish like an herb, and your cheeks will glow with the bloom of health and freshness. Worry, fear, distrust, care-all are poisonous! Joy is balm and healing, and if you will but rejoice, God will give power.
Have a great Thanksgiving!
Advent is right around the corner!