Thankful in Everything PT 4
by MBC STAFF
“In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”
1 Thessalonians 5:18
Why Does God Require His Children To Be Thankful?
He wants us to be thankful because it shows that we are satisfied in Him. Thankfulness is a natural byproduct of satisfaction. When dining with friends, after you have been served an exceptional meal it is natural to thank the one who prepared the meal and satisfied your stomach. We teach our children that when they receive a courtesy, a kindness, or a blessing that they should be thankful and express their thankfulness verbally. This sentiment not only remains but intensifies with respect to God.
A satisfied soul is a thankful soul.
Learning to be Content
The key to finding satisfaction is the acquisition of this skill. Paul recounts this process in his own life (certain words have been bolded for added emphasis):
“Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Phil 4: 11-13)
These are not always easy or desirable things to learn but our level of resistance to these “lessons” will directly correlate to our ability to be satisfied and thus to be thankful. If we can only be content in certain things, we will only be partially or situationally satisfied and this, for the Christian, will not do.
Life will inevitably draw us to places and situations that are undesirable and it is in these we must seek God trusting that even in difficulty, lack, and trouble, God can satisfy and we can be thankful in Him.
Paul acknowledges that this skill or learned behavior does not inherently lie in human ability for he says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Contentment comes in and through Christ alone. Without Christ our Pastor reminds us of what behaviors we will exhibit in response to unfamiliar, unusual, and adverse situations. He says, “bitterness, complaining, jealousy, hate and an unforgiving spirit [will settle] in our hearts.” This friends, ought not be so.
Making God your Portion
Let’s seek to make God our joy and be satisfied in Him. We’ll end this post with the following biblical encouragements:
“O Lord, You are the portion of my inheritance and my cup;You maintain my lot.” (Ps 16:5)
“My flesh and my heart fail; But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” (Ps 73:26)
“You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” (Ps 16:11)
“They are abundantly satisfied with the fullness of Your house, and You give them drink from the river of Your pleasures.” (Ps 36:8)
For His Glory,
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