The Discipline of Giving Thanks

The Thanksgiving holiday is a good reminder to be thankful, but we need to practice the discipline of giving thanks everyday.

1 Thessalonians 5.18 says, “Give thanks in every situation because this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (CEB). I’m glad it says “in every situation” rather than “for every situation.” While we may not like every situation we experience, the discipline is to be thankful anyway, even if only for the promise of God’s presence!

The Psalms talk a lot about giving thanks …

  • “Let’s come before him with thanks!” (Psalm 95.2)
  • “Enter his gates with thanks.” (Psalm 100.4)
  • “Give thanks to the LORD because he is good.” (Psalm 106.1, and others)

I also love what Paul writes in Colossians …

  • “Be rooted and built up in him, be established in faith, and overflow with thanksgiving just as you were taught.” (Colossians 2.7)
  • “Whatever you do, whether in speech or action, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus and give thanks to God the Father through him.” (Colossians 3.17)
  • “Keep on praying and guard your prayers with thanksgiving.” (Colossians 4.2)

A few days ago, Jon Gordon wrote on Twitter:

Research shows you can’t be stressed and thankful at the same time. If you are feeling blessed you won’t be stressed.

We can’t control what happens to us, but we can choose how we respond. And one of the ways we respond is by being thankful. It’s a discipline worth developing!

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