Have you ever heard the phrase "30 days of Thankful"? It's something paper crafters, Christians, and others participate in each year around Thanksgiving. But my question is what about "365 days of Thankful"? Do you tend to complain more than being thankful? I began thinking about being thankful earlier this week when I posted on Facebook about an incident that happened at our house when the waste management people pulled into our cul-de-sac to collect the trash. While pulling around, they ran over one of the buckets blocking our newly painted and stained concrete.
My sweet friend and blog reader Jennifer posted "Not pleasant for sure. Thankful it wasn't a hospital stay, though." Her comment was spot on and really hit me. I should have been thankful and looked at the blessings in this incident. God really put it on my heart about being thankful. I told Jennifer she was right and listed the things I was thankful for in this mess—"The guys working on my house were available to help at 7:45 a.m., the city offices were open early and had management here immediately, AND they got it all up (no stain on the concrete). God is good, and thanks for pointing me to the One that gets the glory in all things!" Jennifer made me think that God wants us to look for the things we are thankful for in even a bad or literally a messy situation.
We are a nation and gender of complaining. The Israelites also grumbled and complained. They were complaining to each other instead of going to the Lord. Sounds a bit like us too, doesn't it? The Israelites did everything but pray and offer thanksgiving to Him. And as much as we try to hide our complaining, God sees and hears it.
Numbers 11:1 "Now the people complained about their hardships in the hearing of the Lord, and when He heard them His anger was aroused. Then fire from the Lord burned among them and consumed some of the outskirts of the camp."
Numbers 14:27 "How long will this wicked community grumble against Me? I have heard the complaints of these grumbling Israelites."
Proverbs 15:29 "The Lord is far from the wicked, but He hears the prayer of the righteous."
I remember acting just like the Israelites at one point in my life too. I can look back now and say "Wow, I was an Israelite in the desert. All I did was complain." Am I proud of that time in my life? No. Do I still complain? Yes, at times. We need to look at everything everyday—even the hard and difficult times—and pray and be thankful. God provided for the Israelites every single day but they rejected Him. He provides for us every single day, and I know I personally want to thank Him for His blessings and provisions. How about you?
Psalm 138:1 "I will praise you, Lord, with all my heart; before the 'gods' I will sing Your praise."
Colossians 2:6-7 "So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in Him, rooted and built up in Him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness."
Colossians 3:15 "Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful."
Colossians 4:2 "Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful."
Hebrews 12:28 "Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe."
As Christians, we should be thankful not just on one holiday or during a season but everyday. I am challenging myself to use my 2016 planner to write out a weekly scripture to remind me to be thankful. The scriptures in today's lesson are a start. I need 52, and I don't think they will be too hard to find in His Word. And finally, I leave you with Biblegateway's verse of the day today (a confirmation to me that this is what we were to study today):
Ephesians 5:19-20 ". . . speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ."
Today I chose to do a Journaling Bible page using Colossians 2:6-7 because I absolutely love the phrase "overflowing with thankfulness." I want to remember to overflow daily with thankfulness to Him!
I used a piece of tissue paper that was in a box of shoes to add all of the flowers and words (except the stickers). I love doing that because there isn't any bleed through, and if you make a mistake, it's on the tissue paper not your Bible page.
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