God Wants Your Thankfulness

Give thanks both in season and out of season.

Tell me something.  How do you come to the throne of Grace?  Are you on bended knee?  Is it during your meditation time?  Could it be only when you experience glad tidings?  Or are you one of those persons who only call on God when in a sarcastic mannerism (and forgive me for this expression) …when all hell breaks loose?

I’m serious!!!

Check yourself!!!

Be honest!!!

God’s Word says in 1st Thessalonians 5:18: “In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”

So, what in the world did the Apostle Paul mean when he admonished the Thessalonians to be thankful in everything.  OOPS! Did you get that?  Go back and read it again.  The scripture says to give thanks IN everything…NOT…give thanks FOR everything.  So, yes, you are allowed to give thanks when all hell breaks loose.  That’s because sometimes mankind is so stubborn that God must make a donkey (I would rather use the euphemism for ‘donkey’, but this is a family-rated blog) speak to our willfulness.  (See Numbers 22:28-39.)

The Apostle Paul was saying that things could be worse.  That life is full of ups and downs.  But God is with us through it all.  I’m a witness to that very truth.  Once when I had to make a choice to either pay my monthly tithes to my church or to use the money to finance my next mission trip abroad, reluctantly I paid my tithes and unpacked my suitcase.  To my surprise, several members in the congregation who had funded some of my mission trips in the past, heard that I was not going on my next trip due to lack of finances, and they miraculously provided all the money I needed to make the journey to St Petersburg, Russia.

But that’s not the end of the story.  While in Russia, all hell broke loose.   I lost my wallet; fell down some unevenly constructed stairs, twice; made an awkward comment and displayed photos of my newly built church building in the USA to a Russian pastor who held his church under a bridge and who commented…what a waste… (he was referencing the expenses used on a building rather than in helping the poor and needy).  Bad scenes all around!  I should have stayed in bed!

But then, hope arrived!

Later, I realized how my actions and mishaps were drawing attention away from why my team had come to Russia in the first place.  We had come to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ and to extend compassion, love and supplies to the administrators and children at the orphan homes there that our USA organization supported.  I prayed for forgiveness for drawing attention to myself and asked God to temper my fate and order my steps in his service.  I ended my prayer by offering thanksgivings in knowing that all things work together for good to then that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.  (Romans 8:28)

Hope floats!

My wallet was recovered.  It had fallen under my bed in my hotel and the housekeeper placed it on the nightstand in tack.  I learned not to display pictures of prosperity to those less fortunate while on mission trips.  I grew in grace, humility and strength while serving in this capacity.  I learned that we can be thankful in prosperity as well as adversity.  I realized that I had no reason to blame God or anyone else for my actions.  Knowing that Jesus Christ has reconciled us to God in everything.  And for that, I can rejoice.

The misunderstanding comes in those two words:  Give thanks IN everything vs. FOR everything.  So, my prayer for all my readers is that the Holy Spirit will make it possible for everyone to be thankful in all things.  Knowing that we will only be able to do this if our gratitude is anchored in You.  Amen and Amen!

Grateful…Grateful…Grateful…

Scripture Lesson: “Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Ephesians 5:19-20).

Click http://www.tgifmasterminds.com every Friday for a new post from The Master’s servant manager…Me!

 

6 thoughts on “God Wants Your Thankfulness

  1. Hello and I send a hardy welcome to the ‘christiantechnerd’. What a clever handle. Tell me something: by looking at the top picture, can you tell if the young lady is in prayer during her meditation time, on bended knee, praising God for glad tidings or is she raising ‘hell’ over something? I chose that picture purposely because to me she expresses a number of circumstances. What’s your opinion?

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  2. And also to you, Sister Tangie, happy holidays to you and your congregation. I trust your absents was not due to sickness or some other ill fate. May God continue to bless your family and your First Lady pastoral duties. Amen!

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  3. This is an excellent message, Sister Fowler. And one to which I can relate, in regards to ‘my actions and mishaps drawing attention’ away from God and His message and mission. I also agree wholeheartedly that we should give thanks IN all things; as God uses all things to teach, grow, mature, and season His children. When we encounter difficulties (whether we cause them or not), God steps in and begins to use that situation for our spiritual benefit. And if we submit to Him in that, we benefit in ways we never would without it. Bless you, sweet friend. Lots of love, Dee

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hello Sister Dee and thank you for those encouraging words. Yes, God does step in, but only if we open that door. (Remember the picture of Jesus standing at the door and knocking? Most people don’t realize that that door does not have a knob on it. The knob is on the other side where we are. It is up to us to open the door and let Christ in.) To be honest, when my mishaps started in Russia, I almost refused to open that door. I’m ashamed to say my first thoughts were I should have not come. But thanks be to God he locked my jaws and continued to shower me with his blessings, forgiveness, understanding and love. Amen!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, you’re absolutely right. Opening that door is necessarily our part in this forgiveness process. I’m so glad you opened that door and received God’s “blessings, forgiveness, understanding and love” resulting in a fruitful and beneficial mission trip. Blessings! Dee

      Liked by 1 person

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