Try to picture being arrogant and thankful at the same time. It’s IMPOSSIBLE. No wonder God commands us to be thankful (Colossians 3:16–17). And since it’s Thanksgiving week, there is no better time to acknowledge that command.
Let’s start with this powerful truth: THANKFULNESS pairs humility and joy to knock out selfishness.
But getting that done is anything but automatic. Why is thankfulness UNNATURAL for Christians? Because our default focus is on fear and worry. Disappointment and despair. Hurts and habits.
God commands us to be thankful because he knows it will redirect our focus from those things that hinder our hope to trusting him and downloading his power to fight through life’s barrage of tests and trials (Romans 15:13).
God does not command us to be thankful as a duty. He does it because he loves us and to: 1) Inspire and grow our faith in him; 2) Experience his joy and hope; and 3) Tell others about the Good News.
Thanksgiving is a time for Christians to give God the glory for everything he has done for us in the past AND to infuse our soul with his joy-powered hope in the moment today and, importantly, in the future.
Thanksgiving gives us a massive dose of HOPE. It shifts a believer’s focus from negativity that shakes our faith to hope in Christ (Colossians 3:4). I do that by focusing on GRATITUDE, one of the most important but often overlooked words in a Christian’s faith walk.
God established GRATITUDE to be the guardian of our soul. If we generate and project and share gratitude, we will be overflowing with THANKSGIVING.
God knows that if we show gratitude–especially during the challenges of life–others in our midst will connect that counter intuitive act to GOD. The faith of believers will be strengthened. The faith of unbelievers could sprout and grow.
How do we make sure THANKFULNESS is coursing through our veins? WATCHFULNESS. That’s right, being constantly vigilant and alert will keep us watchful (Colossians 4:2).
My prayer is that I be ever grateful for everything he has done for me and committed to sharing that gift with others.
WHAT ABOUT YOU?
When was the last time your expressed true, deep, and all-encompassing GRATITUDE to God through PRAYER?
“Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving.” Colossians 4:2
“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Colossians 3:16–17