“in everything […] with thanksgiving […]”
That’s a difficult one.
Paul, the man who wrote the letter of Philippians in the Bible, was in prison at the time. Yet through all the pain, fear, and stress of his trial, he starts his letter with: “I thank my God in all my remembrance of you” (Philippians 1:3). The rest of this letter to his friends in Philippi is just loaded with thanksgiving and rejoicing. He was on a roll! If you didn’t know better, you would never guess he was in captivity.
It’s difficult to give thanks and rejoice “in everything”, isn’t it? I’m sure Paul knew this all too well.
As he closed his letter, he penned some of the most famous words in Scripture:
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. ~ Philippians 4:4-7
Dealing with disease can be so jading. I know for me I’ve become focused on all the negative, forgetting the things I can be thankful for. Mr. C. has helped me see this, and has encouraged me to stop and give thanks for things, no matter how small.
For example, when we visit the doctor to get the latest lab results, I tend to dismiss all the good news and focus on the things that still need improvement. Then, of course, I complain and get anxious.
Well, instead of getting down this month, I’d like to try 30 days of thanksgiving based on Philippians 4:4-7.
You’re welcome to join me!
What about the Lord causes you to rejoice always?
How is God leading you through anxiety?
As you pray, with thanksgiving, how have you noticed a difference in your life?
Do you have a testimony of God’s peace guarding your heart and mind?
Share in the comments below!