Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever. And say, “Save us, O God of our salvation; Gather us together, and deliver us from the Gentiles, To give thanks to Your holy name, To triumph in Your praise.” Blessed be the Lord God of Israel From everlasting to everlasting! And all the people said, “Amen!” and praised the Lord.
I Chronicles 16:34-36
In our society there is a disconnect.
We are forgetting what it means to appreciate, even the smallest things in life.
I was taught to say “thank you” as gratitude for even the smallest of gestures towards me.
We have become a society of expectations. Led astray from the value of thankfulness.
We have become thankless!
Taking advantage in an expectant way to fulfill our desires. “I take what I want” mentality.
When we live a life that doesn’t give thanks, then how could we ever be mindful and thankful for our Salvation?
Being thankful is a dying virtue.
Can you be thankful to the Lord for even the hardships you go through?
It is so easy to give thanks and praise when the Lord showers mercy on us. When we see His Goodness fall on us. Thank Him and Glorify His Mighty Name for the Salvation He brings us through His Son Jesus Christ!
Are we giving thanks to Him before He shows us His mercy!
Can we thank Him before the deliverance of our situation?
Oh, but it is easy to give thanks because He saves and delivers. In that Salvation we are no longer desperate to be saved, so sometimes the Thanksgiving fades.
Can we praise Him even if it seems like there is nothing to be thankful for?
But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them.
Acts 16:25 NKJV
Paul and Silas are cellmates! They are literally partners in crime for preaching Christ Crucified!
They had been dragged through the marketplace. They had been in front of the courts, convicted of speaking about Salvation through Jesus. The people rose up against them. Had their clothes torn off. Were beaten with rods. Then thrown in prison. They had a personal guard to watch them to ensure that they wouldn’t create more problems.
They were put in the inner prison. Inner prison would be like solitary confinement. Their feet were put into stocks so that there would be no way of escape.
I am pretty sure the accommodations weren’t so accommodating.
It must have been dark and cold.
So how could it be that these two men could still have enough joy in their hearts to praise and sing, worship and give thanks to the Lord in this uncertain situation?
Because they knew Who they served. They understood hard times would come and go.
They knew that the Lord doesn’t change based on our circumstances! They also knew of the promises their Messiah spoke, and believed them!
These promises of Jesus are what would keep them and sustain them in the darkest of cells. It gives them hope, joy and peace even in the walls of prison!
I will never leave you, I will never forsake you, I will be with you until the end of the age. I will protect you. I will provide, I will be your strength. I will listen, I will answer, I will love you…these are just some of the promises.
Thanks be to the Almighty God, the Creator of all things. The One who was, who is and who is to come!
Knowing His promises. Knowing that He is the Only begotten Son of the Father. God in the Flesh. The Lion of the Tribe of Judah, the Alpha and Omega!
Let me ask you, can you give Him thanks for just who Jesus is?
Praise Him no matter the season you may be going through?
Can you be grateful for even the greatest tragedies this life can serve us?
Let us all start to live a life of gratitude and thankfulness to include who Jesus is and not just what He does!
By doing so even in the hardest times of life we can have joy, because He is the King of Glory!
Let us be found praying and singing hymns to God the Father just because He is God!
Then we can be a good witness of Jesus Christ to all the remaining prisoners as they watch and listen to us.
Ler them be in total awe trying to understand where this joy came from.
This joy, this peace all starts from being thankful!
Practice being thankful today.
Thank Him for the traffic jam. Thank Him for the flat tire. Thank Him for the things that you typically would not thank Him for.
Then watch how much more joy and peace He will bring to you today!
Be thankful in all things!