It is always possible to give thanks.
Possible? Yes! Easy? No! Yet it is always possible.
Some things in the Bible just blow me away.
So if this had been you tell me how you would have felt?
You show up and preach for three Sabbath days. Then the leaders in town get so made that they organize a squad to attack the people who have decided to follow the Lord. They drag a man out of his house and take him to city officials to indicate that he (and you) are toxic to the city…
Things are so bad that your new friends smuggle you out of the city by night to get you out of there! They send you away, and you escape by the skin of your teeth.
Then you are given opportunity to draft a public note.
What would you say?
Well, Paul the apostle was the guy who had to leave town in a terrific rush—we used to say, “Get out of Dodge!”
He barely dodged the trouble and the church inherited it.
What does Paul say?
See to it that no one repays evil for evil, but always seek after that which is good for one another and for all people.
Pray without ceasing,
In everything give thanks
For this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning You.
1 Thessalonians 5:15-18.
If anyone had a right to complain it was Paul. Yet the mark that set this man apart, even when he suffered tremendously is that he always, always, always found a way to thank God…
Then he said that giving thanks in every circumstance was the identifying mark of being a disciple of Jesus.
History is clear: there is more thanksgiving in the writings of Paul the apostle alone than there is in any other ancient writer… I can’t think of anyone who suffered more, and always turned his circumstances into an opportunity to thank God.
We just celebrated Thanksgiving… And it is a simple thing to do. Make a list of the things that are blessings. And as you begin to thank Him, you will discover that the Presence of the Lord will grow more profound in your life.
© David Chotka 2020.