Give Thanks to the Lord

Welcome to today’s “Time in the Word”. I told you last week we’d finish up our Colossians passage, but I’ve got thankfulness on my mind with the Thanksgiving holiday coming up.

Our scripture today comes from Psalm 136, with our focus on verse 1. If you are reading this digitally you can simply click on the highlighted text, otherwise, I invite you to grab your bible and turn to Psalm 136:1, or I have enclosed the scripture below for you. How are you giving thanks to God? What are you thankful for?

Psalm 136- NIV

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good.
His love endures forever.

-BibleGateway

The season of fall hosts one of my most favorite holidays, Thanksgiving. Giving thanks and being thankful has been a focus of mine for the last five years. I’ve had to do some serious heart examining about my lack of thankfulness and giving thanks. “Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever” rolls through my mind these last few days, so I know God’s been wanting me to focus on being thankful, still.

Life can wear you out

In my quest to figure out why I am so unthankful, I discovered the problem lies (doesn’t it always?) with my attitude of how I perceive God is good to me. It is easy for me (and I am sure that many of us feel this) to base God’s goodness on what “good” happens or on what “bad” happens. Almost as if there is a meter on my heart and whenever good stuff happens the meter arm rises, but then whenever bad stuff happens, the meter arm lowers.

If my bad attitude, and yours as well, had a chance to re-write Psalm 136 verse 1, it may have looked like this:

  • Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; when I get what I want when I want it; this is my indication he loves me.

Can you relate?

I can own thinking that. Oftentimes as I have faced life challenges, I’ve instantly thought “Well, God, your word tells me your good, yet why do you allow XYZ to happen?” To which I’ve had to give myself a good talking too, (Oh you of little faith!) cause I know God IS GOOD. God is NOT evil. He is JUST. God LOVES me and you so much he isn’t willing to let us stay the same.

Whether by trial or consequence we experience life challenges, they are meant to remove sinful habits, sinful thinking, and sinful responses till you and I become more like Christ.

Maturity

I think the mark of a mature Christian comes when adversity hits you and you see that adversity for how it improves you. Can you look at your situation and see the “good” of what it is doing “in” you; in your relationship with Christ?

It’s very easy to see the destruction of what your trial is causing. We get caught up in the emotions and feelings. We are hurt, disappointed, and frustrated. And often we ask “Why, GOD, are you allowing this?” Maybe we need to ask the question “Am I going to focus on thanking and praising God through this, or will I be giving it to Satan by complaining and wallowing?”

Can you give “Thanks to the Lord…

  • When you’re going through your cancer treatment?
  • If your spouse has left you for someone else?
  • When you lose your job?
  • Watching your child destroy their life?
  • When your pregnancy ends in a miscarriage?

I continue to work on my thankfulness and I hope you will as well. I love when I work hard to find goodness in each day, despite what may have transpired. Giving thanks to the Lord for what I’ve learned about myself and Him in my trial. Giving thanks to the Lord for what the trial is helping me become. Giving thanks to the Lord that his love endures for me, FOREVER. He doesn’t throw us aside and give up on us! AMEN.

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