I wrote a blog last night, but instead of posting it, I deleted it. On purpose. It was of the same name, “And Be Thankful.”
Thankfulness is the last “garment” that God tells us to put on in Colossians 3:12 – 15, and I wanted to write a whole blog post about it.
I wrote about how we, in first world countries, have so much to be thankful for, and we do. I am pretty sure that everyone reading this has enough to eat, a choice of clothes to wear, and a roof over their heads. And most have a lot more than that to be thankful for: family, friends, and so many extras.
I also wrote about the things we have that are far better than that: the eternal inheritance that God has for us, His Presence with us, etc.
And I encouraged us all to try an experiment and make a list of all the things that we are thankful for. I wondered if we would come up with 50, 100, or 200.
But this morning it hit me: not everyone lives in a peaceful country, not everyone has the freedoms and the nice life that we first world people enjoy.
But the things that are written in the Bible weren’t written only for affluent us. They were written for everyone! And if everything that we have was taken away, and war and persecution was our lot, God’s Word still stands.
And the bottom line is that God is with us, He is working everything out for our good, and He is loving and trustworthy. So…we can be thankful, and we should be thankful (because He says so), and that is that.
That we have so much to be thankful for, that we can count so many blessings (and I still think it is a good idea to do that exercise of writing out all the things we are thankful for) is great.
But I just read Psalm 79 today, and in it Asaph is lamenting and asking “How long, O Lord?”, Because His people are suffering many horrible things. Yet he ends with saying, “But we your people, the sheep of your pasture, will give thanks to You forever; from generation to generation we will recount your praise.”
The bottom line is that whatever we are going through, good or bad (and my life is pretty good at this moment), if we are part of God’s family through faith in Yeshua/Jesus, then we have the Almighty God, the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe, as our Loving, Wise, Patient, Forgiving, Trustworthy Father. So on that basis, we should be able to say with the Psalmist, “I will give thanks to You forever!”