Are you thankful?

The command in the scriptures to give thanks is repeated numerous times.  One of the most pointed is in 1 Thessalonians 5:18 where Paul says, “give thanks in all circumstances.”  This summer in our Wednesday evening study we looked at Paul’s letter to the Colossians and there Paul says five different times to be thankful or to give thanks.  The question is: are we to be thankful for everything or just in every circumstance?  Are we to be thankful for sin in this world?  Are we to give thanks even when our culture is moving further and further away from God?  The five references in the letter to the Colossians help to answer these questions.  In 1:3 Paul says he always thanks God for the Colossian believers.  In 3:15 Paul, after telling us to let the peace of Christ rule in our hearts, says be thankful to God for peace that surpasses understanding.  Again in 3:16 he says, “with thankfulness in your hearts to God” and in 3:17, “give thanks to God the father through him.”  We are to be a thankful people in all circumstances, but our thanksgiving is to be directed to God.  The command is not be thankful for all things, but to always be thankful to God.  We can be thankful always and give thanks in all circumstances, because God is in control, God is faithful, and God is good.  In spite of all the bad things that happen in this world, in spite of sin, God is working all things together for our good.  He is making us into his masterpieces in Christ Jesus.  I thank God he allows all kinds of circumstances to come my way, because I know that he loves me and is still working on me and that he will never leave me nor forsake me.

– Pastor Corey Mitchell

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