REJOICE IN THE LORD ALWAYS!
IS THERE A RECIPE FOR A THANKFUL HEART?
With floods, fires, hurricanes—kidnappings, lawlessness, corruption—mail bombs, not so peaceful protests, and another election season of disunity and discord…it’s easy to become consumed with all that’s bad in the world.
The key to having a thankful heart lies in the things one chooses to fixate on.
A Christian’s citizenship is in heaven (not on this earth) and so that’s where the focus should be placed—looking for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ (Phil. 3:20, Col. 3:1-3). That doesn’t mean that a Christian ignores all else going on in this earthly life, but that he/she filters it through a heavenly lens.
After all the blessings that Christians today can “count” are not terrestrial (of the earth) but every spiritual blessing (Divine in nature) found in heavenly places in Christ (Eph. 1:3).
We can be very thankful no matter our circumstances in this life today that we have a God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ Who has made us accepted in the Beloved (Christ). And it’s in Him that we have:
•redemption (through His blood), the forgiveness of sins (according to the riches of His grace),
•eternal security (Eph. 1:6-7…14).
There’s always rejoicing when one puts their sights on the spiritual and embraces the riches of the glory of the inheritance of the saints in Him.
Try and grasp this:
There’s exceeding greatness of God’s power toward those who believe, according to the working of His mighty power which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come (Eph. 1:19-21).
The apostle Paul encouraged the Philippians as he was concluding his epistle to them to:
—Rejoice in the Lord always,
—Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer & supplication, with thanksgiving, let your request be made known to God.
The benefit of doing this would be the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, would guard their hearts and minds through Jesus Christ (Phil. 4:4, 6-7).
Recall the recipe for a thankful heart?
It’s in what one chooses to fixate on.
So I close with the apostle Paul’s “Finally, brethren” (& my grandmother’s favorite verse): “Whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—MEDITATE ON THESE THINGS” (Phil. 4:8).
Do these things and not only will you have a thankful heart, but it’ll also be filled with a peace that won’t be shaken by the ‘things of this world’.
“…let the peace of God rule in your hearts…AND BE YE THANKFUL” (Col. 3:15).