Sometimes I don’t feel like being thankful. Sometimes I’d rather sit in a puddle of complaints and worries than list out what I’m grateful for. Sometimes I focus on all that’s going wrong in my life, instead of fixing my eyes on Jesus and all the blessings He has given me.
Being thankful is hard!!
Can you relate?
And it’s not that I don’t want to be thankful– I do– It’s just hard to conscientiously be thankful. Especially when it’s not the fourth Thursday of November.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 tells us to “Give thanks in all circumstances.” But how? How can we give thanks when our lives are falling apart around us and all hope seems gone? How can we give thanks in the bad times? More than that, why should we give thanks even when everything is going wrong?
The sentence “Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good; His love endures forever” appears in Psalm 107:1, 118:1, and 136:1, as well as 1 Chronicles 16:34. It’s probably in the Bible more times than that, but we’re give this specific command at least four times.
As I read this verse (or verses), I realize it tells us two very good reasons as to why we should give thanks. We don’t have to give thanks just to check something off our to-do list. It’s not empty lip service.
We should give thanks because:
- God is good.
- God’s love endures forever.
1. Because God is good.
“The LORD is good to all; He has compassion on all He has made.” Psalm 145:9
“Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in Him.” Psalm 34:8
God is good. And out of his goodness He has blessed us abundantly. As James 1:17 says, “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” All good things come from God.
James 1:17 also tells us that God doesn’t change. So the saying “God is good all the time. All the time God is good” is a true statement. God doesn’t change, so He’s always good… even when not-so-good things are happening.
2. Because God’s love endures forever.
God has amazing love for us. He loved us so much He sent His son to die for us (John 3:16). He thinks we’re worth dying for (or as Olaf puts it, “worth melting for”). He loved us even when we were still covered in our sins (Romans 5:8) and He loves us through our imperfections.
And God’s love never goes away.
It lasts forever.
Like the prodigal’s father, God loves us even when we run away and do things our own way. He loves us because we are His beloved children. There is nothing we can do to cause God to love us less than He already does.
Colossians 3:12 begins a passage commonly referred to as the “put on” passage; it contains a list of attributes we should “wear” as Christians. However, this list begins by saying, “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved…” and proceeds to tell us what we should do.
So often though we think that if we’re kind and compassionate and humble and patient and so on, THEN God will love us and choose us and make us holy. This thought is wrong. As Kelly Minter pointed out in her book The Fitting Room, it’s because we’re already chosen, holy and dearly loved that we are able to put on the previously listed attributes.
God loves us. And His love endures forever. Hallelujah!
God is Good and His love endures forever.
Those are two GREAT reasons why we should jump up and down with thanksgiving.
What are we waiting for? Let’s give thanks to our God!!