“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” -1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
The pastor at my church unpacked this verse yesterday. It never ceases to amaze me that God sends the words our hearts need most exactly when we need it–whether we want to admit it or not.
Rejoicing, praying, and giving thanks are commands for us regardless of circumstance. In good times, in bad times, in healthy times, in sick times, in stressful times, in peaceful times–we are to rejoice, pray, and give thanks…All with a grateful heart. Oh how I need to remember, especially in these days of balancing immense joy with great unknown. College seniors–you know exactly what I mean.
In this week of Thanksgiving, I am especially reminded of all the gifts and blessings that abound in my life. Take a minute, friend and remember too. Even in the little things, I find true joy and thankfulness. We need to remind each other to take a step back and remember. It’s so easy to forget when we’re in the middle of day to day routine.
I was challenged at church yesterday to give thanks–a posture of true gratitude–without grumbling in the process. How easy is it to grumble about traffic, the weather, too much to do, or people driving us crazy?! Stress is real, and it’s really easy to brush it aside with complaints and let it build. We’re human, which means we are prone to wander and prone to grumble. Amen? But there’s good news! In gratitude regardless of circumstance we receive the gift of grace, which spurs peace in our hearts. And God gives grace abundantly, even when we fall short. Will you remember to respond with gratitude instead of grumbling with me? I think we all need a little more grace and a lot less complaining. I can testify! And it won’t always work out perfectly, but it makes me take a step back first and remember.
Life as a business owner is especially at risk for comparison and striving and setting unrealistically high expectations. Grumbling is a treacherous consequence when things don’t go as expected. But you know what? God knows what I need more than I can begin to understand. He knows what you need, too. Dwelling in a posture of thankfulness instead of grumbling instills peace and fullness of the Spirit.
Let’s remember the gift He gives us daily – mercy that is NEW every morning!
My church’s worship band released an album and one of the songs speaks so directly to these verses. The song is called Rejoice by Redeemer Community Church. Give it a listen!
I will rejoice, Oh I will rejoice. I will give thanks to you my God. No matter the day, no matter what comes my way. I will rejoice, and I will give thanks to you….
Let’s remember the gifts we have been given together–rejoicing always, praying without ceasing, and giving thanks in all circumstances.
Wishing you a blessed Thanksgiving holiday!