November 21, 2011

Give Thanks to the Lord

Being in ministry does not exempt me from trying situations. My husband is recovering from cancer. Most people in my state were without water and electricity for days. My mother-in-law is seriously ill. Our house was robbed on Sunday while we were ministering at church. I went to Penn State.

On the other hand, my life contains many bright spots…a beautiful wedding and daughter-in-law, the prospect of a new grandchild, 38 years of marriage, a growing church. Should I approach Thanksgiving/thanksgiving with only thoughts of circumstances that I like? Can I praise God for all that He does even when I don’t understand my current situation?

I try to thank Him for the positive aspects of negative events. But, sometimes I only manage a things-are-not-as-bad-as-they-could-be sort of thankfulness, which is not really gratitude at all. Even when it is difficult, I know that a wise and loving God allows bad things for a reason, and I should thank Him for His sovereign power. (Job 40:2) Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, for His steadfast love endures forever!

I try to thank Him for blessings in my day-to-day life. (Psalm 126:3) But, sometimes I feel a sense of entitlement. In addition, I take credit for the good things that happen when I should be glorifying God for His acts of kindness. What a backward way of thinking! Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, for His steadfast love endures forever!

My issue with gratitude stems from my small view of God. Something as simple as a child's mealtime prayer tells me that God is great, God is good. He is the holy God of the universe who made all things. In my sinfulness, I don’t deserve any happy circumstances. And yet, He does not withhold good things from His people. (Psalm 84:11, Psalm 8:4) He forgives me and redeems my entire life. Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, for His steadfast love endures forever!

I am easily tossed about by circumstances while God is changeless. He is the mighty one who does not fall. God continues to loves me even when he brings trials into my life. (Proverbs 3:12) He will never leave me or forsake me. I should praise Him for all His surpassing worth. Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, for His steadfast love endures forever! (Psalm 107: 1)


  1. Good reminder to strive for a 1 Thessalonians 5:18 spirit: "give thanks in all circumstances, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."

  2. Because of what God has ordained for my family, we are constantly hearing, "No matter what your situation, it could always be worse." I am SO SICK of hearing this! This is not an attitude that makes me feel any better about going to countless doctor appointments and therapies. What does help comfort my sometimes weary soul is something that a friend told me today:
    I need to remember that God has brought this for my family because this is what is GOOD for my family.
    I know that I'm not saying anything new to you, Patsy, but it feels better to get that out of my head. Maybe I should go blog about it.... :)
    Thanks for the reminder to be thankful, truly thankful, not just "looking on the bright side".

  3. CristyLynn, I agree with you. Plus, if are thankful only because your situation is not as bad as some other person's circumstances, you run a risk if your circumstances do become as bad as someone else's.


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