Thanksgiving . . . The Will of God!
Over the years I have had many people, both new Christians, and Seasoned Saints, tell me that they wished they knew the will of God for their lives. I always take them to I Thessalonians 5:16-18 16Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”
Their response is almost always the same. “That’s not what I meant; I need to know God’s will for my life for what I am going through right now!”
I would gently point out that if they were not fulfilling what they knew to be God’s immediate will for their lives they couldn’t very well expect God to reveal more of His will to them. And what is His known immediate will for every believer? Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. This Thanksgiving season I want to focus on, “in everything give thanks.”
Years ago, in my study of the Book of Romans Chapter 1, I saw that thanklessness creates a spiritual vacuum that the powers of darkness invade. If you do not repent and embrace a life of thanksgiving this vacuum will create a spiritually downward spiral that imparts four (4) horrific consequences in the life of the believer.
Romans 1:21 & 28
21 because, although they knew God, (they believed in God) they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate (debased) mind, to do those things which are not fitting;
I think it would be more impacting if we simply listed them:
- They became futile in their thoughts, . . .
- Their foolish hearts were darkened, . . .
- They did not like to retain God in their knowledge, and . . .
- God gave them over to a reprobate (debased) mind, to do those things which are not fitting;
The solution is found in Revelations 3 where Jesus was rebuking the Church of the Laodiceans because they had gotten lukewarm in the commitment to Him. He extended a very simple antidote to them in verse 20: Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come into him and dine with him, and he with Me.
In other words, invite Me back in and return to your first works which are “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”
I leave you with a proverb that for decades I bring out and share every Thanksgiving Season: Thanksgiving is something I used to do once a year when I ate turkey, now it’s something I do continuously to keep from being a turkey!
In other words, God has called us to a lifestyle of Thanksgiving!