Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Loving the Saints-Part VIII

Phil 4:6 6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. 1 Thess 5:18 18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

One of the central duties of Christians is giving thanks. The failure to give thanks is the source of much trouble within the church. It is the fuel that feeds discontentment, discord, and schism.
It is very difficult to find fault with your neighbor when you are sincerely thanking God for him. It is very difficult to bemoan your circumstances when you are thanking God for them. Now, both of these examples are negative examples. I am encouraging you to thank God for those difficult things in your life, for the hard providences if you will. But that is not the best kind of thanksgiving.

God has showered us with innumerable blessings. They are all around us. In the house we live in, the breakfast we eat, the job we go to, the wife we come home to and the children we wrestle on the carpet with. Furthermore, he has given us brothers and sisters in Christ and spiritual mothers and fathers in the church. He has given us promises in baptism and the Lord’s Supper and He declares these promises to us again and again as we meet on the recurring weekly cycle of the Lord’s Day to also declare our allegiance to Him.In the regular course of life, if we remind ourselves to give thanks for all the good the Lord has done for us and is doing for us, we don’t have time to look at the few slights and difficulties around us. We are busy remembering God’s goodness instead of forgetting it. This forgetting is probably the chief sin in all of scripture. It denies the world that God has made and controls. So, let us remember that in everything, we must give thanks to God.

My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth. And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him. 1 John 3:18-19

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