In the last “Tool of Thanksgiving” post, I took great length in showing the Children of Israel’s penchant, their strong natural response to difficult times, even at the doorway of their promised breakthrough. I ended the previous post with speaking on the “rest” that God desires us to obtain. All of that was leading to the verse found in Philippians 4:4-7 ESV“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.” The asterisks were my way of emphasizing the end of 5 and 6. God is here. God is
with us … Emmanuel … Do. Not. Be. Anxious … about ANYTHING (God is here). In ALL THINGS, in everything, give thanks. Not in some things. Not in just the cotton candy days … in everything. It is with this mindset that we can obtain that rest, that peace of God that exceeds all understanding (not just your understand, but all understanding or comprehension). Then, once we are in this restful place, our hearts and minds will be protected in Christ Jesus and we can experience the joyful strength of the Lord, Nehemiah 8:10c “Then he said to them, “Go your way … do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” It all starts where? In the heart.
I say it starts in the heart, but really, it starts with God … “because he first loved us” (1 Jn 4:19). He chose to be our Emmanuel, to be our “God with us.” Then, as we allow Him to be our Emmanuel and let that fact truly take root in our heart, it is our choice to be thankful … then our thankfulness (and thanksgiving) results in a guarded heart and peace which leads to joy that gives us God’s strength to endure the storms of life. God doesn’t always take the storm away, sometimes he calms them, but most of the time, he rides them out with us.
Question: In my next post, I’ll continue this expounding but for now, I just want these things to sink in. The tool of Thanksgiving is vital to a successful life. What are you thankful for today?
Until later . . .