Sometimes, worship and thanksgiving can be a sacrifice. That may be because we are down, depressed, or things are not comfortable for us. Perhaps hardship or tragedy has struck our lives in some way and we do not want to thank God. Yet, the Bible urges us to give thanks to the Lord. Psalm 106:1 says, “Praise the Lord! Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever” (nkjv).
We are also told in Colossians 3:17, “And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him” (nkjv). And Hebrews 13:15 says, “Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name” (nkjv). We are not told to give thanks to the Lord because we feel good. We are to give thanks to the Lord because He is good.
As we approach God to ask for new blessings, we should never forget to offer thanks for the blessings He has already given. We must be just as quick in returning thanks as we are in requesting help; but many times, we are not. We are quick to ask for help, but we are slow in giving thanks.
Sometimes, giving thanks can be difficult, because we feel like we have been dealt a bad hand in life or things have happened to us that we do not fully understand. But here is something we need to remember: “In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Thessalonians 5:18 nkjv). This verse does not say to give thanks in some things, or in what you believe are good things; it says to give thanks in all things.
Now, it is easy for me to give thanks when something wonderful happens to me. However, when something bad takes place, I think, “I won’t give thanks for that.” I don’t know that we will ever fully comprehend what was good or bad in our lives until much later. I would even suggest that what you think is a bad thing today might in turn be a good thing for tomorrow or down the road. And what you have thought of as a good thing may, in time, turn out to be a bad thing.
I believe that when you look back years from now, you will be able to say that the Lord knew what He was doing.
Let me say something that may surprise you: the will of God is not always easy to discern.Don’t Worry. Pray!
Why should we pray? There are many things I could say in response, but here is one reason why:You Are Loved by God
God loves you. We have heard it a thousand times, but it’s true. He loves everyone, everywhere, all the time. Jesus put it best when He said “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son…” (John 3:16 nkjv).
The lures of this world are rich in temptation, but poor in offering real fulfillment. Momentary thrills can often bring lifetime regret. Tuesday on A NEW BEGINNING, Pastor Greg Laurie poses a key question: “what do you live for?” It’s an important study in his Happiness Series!All Sermons by Greg Laurie