Giving Thanks to our Lord Always!
Psalm 100:4 (NIV): “Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His Name.”
1 Thessalonians 5:18 (NIV): “…Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
Let us remember this week that:
Living a life of thanksgiving requires a continual journey of faith and trust in God’s goodness. May we recognise that every good and perfect gift comes from God (James 1:17), and give thanks to Him in all circumstances (1 Thessalonians 5:18). This involves developing a heart of gratitude, even during challenging times, as well as trusting that God is working all things together for our good and His glory (Romans 8:28). May we regularly express our gratitude to God through prayer and worship – and may we recall His acts of faithfulness in the past. May our gratitude overflow and impact those around us. When we live a life of obedience and praise, we can cultivate a content heart and a sound mind. Our lives can then overflow with thanksgiving to our loving and gracious God.
So how can we cultivate a lifestyle of gratitude?
– By realising that God is our ultimate source of growth and sustenance. Through each season of life, God is our unwavering pillar of strength and guidance – the foundation that keeps us grounded. The image of a growing tree, as depicted in God’s Word, is a beautiful metaphor for our spiritual journey and how we can grow in faith. Just as a tree draws nourishment from its roots, we can draw inspiration, guidance and strength from our relationship with Jesus. Together, as a community of believers, we can support and uplift one another, growing and flourishing in our faith.
– By surrendering our lives completely to God. As we experience God’s goodness, faithfulness and love, our hearts are filled with gratitude and a deeper desire to lay down our own understanding and trust His infinite wisdom. God’s ways and thoughts are higher than ours. May we ask Him to grant us the grace to trust Him even when we cannot fully understand the here and now or what is to come. May we patiently wait on our Lord and faithfully remain in Him, so that we may know God created us with a purpose, and we can only find that purpose by surrendering our lives completely to Christ. Let us submit our sins, doubts, fears, selfishness and uncertainty to God, knowing He is in control. As His workmanship, we are spiritually transformed, renewed, and prepared to do the good works He has planned for us (Ephesians 2:10). In our Heavenly Father we find rest, restoration and hope. May we let go of worldly desires and ambitions, and ask God to empower us to become who He created us to be. Through our act of surrender, our lives can indeed become a worship back to Him.
– By remembering God’s faithfulness. May we remain mindful of our Lord’s presence as we navigate each day with confidence and hope, trusting in His perfect plan for us and knowing that His faithfulness will not fail us. As promised in Genesis 28:15 (AMP): “Behold, I am with you and will keep [careful watch over you and guard] you wherever you may go, and I will bring you back to this [promised] land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.”
May we always be grateful for God’s promises, provision, presence and faithfulness. May we see the good in every situation and ask God to move in our hearts – guiding us towards a mindset and lifestyle of constant gratitude. Let us give thanks to our Lord, for He is good; His compassion and loving-kindness endure forever! (Psalm 107:1)
Lord, thank You that we can be together today. Lord, I pray that we will remain in You and that You will strengthen us and give us wisdom when we need to encourage those going through a tough time. I pray that we will also have people around us that will encourage us. Help us to stand up straight in these times. And Lord, I thank You for everything that You do for us.
Father, thank You for Your grace and mercy. Through Your forgiveness, we are able to become a masterpiece. You are still working on us, little by little. We pray that You would help us become more like Christ each and every day. Father, we are not who we want to be yet, but thankfully we are not who we used to be. Thank You for preparing good works for us and for using us for Your glory. In Jesus’ name.
Lord, it’s wonderful to talk about surrender but it’s quite a different thing to actually do it. I pray for each and every one of us, that You’d help us to truly surrender, whatever that looks like in our lives today. Maybe it’s surrendering many, many small things. Maybe it’s surrendering a really, really, really big thing that we know we need to surrender to You. Whatever that is in our lives, we pray that Your Spirit would give us the strength to actually lay it down, to surrender it to You. Thank You that we can trust You with our future, with our lives, with our relationships, and with whatever is happening in our world. Thank You that we can trust You implicitly. Lord, we love You and we pray that You’d help us. In Jesus’ name.
Lord, despite all the distractions of this world, let us remember that Your plan has never changed. You know every struggle each of us faces, and You are always with us. You never leave us nor forsake us. And no matter what is happening around us, You are able, and You never change.
Lord, open our eyes and move powerfully in our hearts, so that we will always gravitate towards finding something to be thankful for. Lord, some of us need YOUR intervention! In the midst of an entitled generation, we are desperate for real change and sustainable habits. In the name of Christ. Amen.
(This WRAP is with great appreciation towards Roald, Jack, Santa, Michael and Johan)
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