Thursday, November 26, 2015

Giving Thanks to God

Many times we think of giving thanks to God only around Thanksgiving. Celebrating Thanksgiving is definitely a good reminder. For those who believe in Jesus Christ there are many reasons for us to give thanks to God. We have a great and wonderful salvation through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The facets of our salvation through Jesus Christ are innumerable.  We have been redeemed (Gal. 3:13), reconciled (Rom. 5:10, Col. 1:22), justified (Rom. 5:9), sanctified (Heb. 10:10), forgiven (Eph. 1:7, Col. 1:14) and so much more. The benefits we have from our salvation through Jesus Christ are amazing. We have been adopted by God (Gal. 4:5, Eph. 1:5); we are children of God (1 John 3:1-2); we have an inheritance (Col. 1:12), imperishable and undefiled reserve for us in heaven (1 Peter 1:4) and much more. Just looking at these should cause us to continuously give thanks to God.

Do we give thanks continually in everything? 

“Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.”  (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)*

“Through Him then, let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that give thanks to His name.”  (Hebrews 13:15)

Do we give thanks in everything? Are we continually giving thanks to God? I was thinking about this the other day and it seems like whenever I am on a project for work or working on a project at home; if there is something that can go wrong it will more than likely go wrong. In the times of frustration I forget to give thanks to the Lord. Instead, I complain and ask Him why this is happening to me and later realize that there is a reason for everything. We may not realize what it is at the moment. After this summer’s projects I realized, the more difficulties in the projects I have to deal with, the more experience I gain, which makes me better at my job in the long run. The more difficulties that seem like they are impossible to handle, the more we are humbled and turn to God for wisdom and understanding. I am thankful that God allowed me to go through those difficulties and I am thankful that I can trust Him for wisdom and understanding.

Life in general is like that. We have a plan and we think that everything should work a certain way, but in the end we can look back at where the Lord has led us and some of the experiences were painful; some were encouraging; some were heart breaking, but in the end when we look back we can see how our faith in Jesus Christ has grown and we can thank God all the more for everything that He has done. 

Our offering to Him here on this earth is to be an “offering of praise, which is the fruit of our lips that give thanks to His name”. It is only through Jesus Christ and His sacrifice on the cross for us that we can come before the throne of the Father and offer our sacrifice of praise. We have so much to be thankful for. Let us remember all that God has done for us and let us continually, each and every day, bring our sacrifices of praise to Him; giving Him thanks for all that He has done and continues to do in our lives. Let us not lose sight of the giving thanks to Him continually. Our giving of thanks for all God has done, is doing and continues to do in our lives, should be a part of our lifestyle, not just something we do once in a while.

The thanksgiving and praise we offer to Him will not stop when we physically die here on this earth. We will continue to constantly give Him praise, glory and thanksgiving for all eternity.
I want to leave you with this magnificent scene in heaven of thanksgiving and praise to our Lord God with the hope that it will cause you to worship Him; giving Him the thanks and praise that He is worthy of; the thanksgiving and praise rightly belonging to Him.

“And the four living creatures, each one of them having six wings, are full of eyes around and within; and day and night they do not cease to say, ‘HOLY, HOLY, HOLY is THE LORD GOD, THE ALMIGHTY, WHO WAS AND WHO IS AND WHO IS TO COME.’  And when the living creatures give glory and honor and thanks to Him who sits on the throne, to Him who lives forever and ever, the twenty-four elders will fall down before Him who sits on the throne, and will worship Him who lives forever and ever, and will cast their crowns before the throne, saying, ‘Worthy are You, our Lord and our God, to receive glory and honor and power; for You created all things, and because of Your will they existed, and were created.’”(Revelation 4:8-11)

*All verses have been copied from the NASB