By Jill Briscoe
“Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’swill for you in Christ Jesus.” ~ 1 Thessalonians 5:18
When the Scriptures say, “This is God’s will for you,” we need have no doubts that what is being said is indeed God’s will for us!
Are you in the habit of saying thank you no matter what? Notice the verse doesn’t tell us that it’s God’s will for us to give thanks for all circumstances, but in all circumstances. Paul was writing to the Thessalonians, who were suffering difficult things in difficult times. Yet he told them to give thanks!
In the middle of a nightmare, we can give thanks that “weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning” (Psalm 30:5). In the pain of bereavement, we can thank God for the comfort of his “rod” and “staff” in our “dark valley of death” (Psalm 23:4). When others reject us for our beliefs, we can thank God that He accepts us fully and unreservedly, and we can be thankful for friends who believe as we do. In all things there will be something for which we can praise and thank God. When we can’t praise Him for what, in His sovereign will, He has allowed, we can praise Him for who He is in the middle of it.
Dare we thank God for such things? Yes! No matter what happens, give thanks!
Lord, I have so much I truly thank You for. But there are also some situations I cannot understand, and I struggle to utter “Thank You” over them. Help me to remember that You are a powerful God, You are in control, and that I can praise You and thank You for Your comfort, presence, and working in even the rough times of my life. Thank You. Amen.