I know the scriptures and teaching, but a loss knocked me off my feet and I was whirling around in an uncertain consideration of how to meet or deal with what may be a new permanent reality. It takes a lot of effort to adjust to or resist challenges that arise. Whatever we decide should proceed from faith, which is not like a decision process with fact gathering, analysis and reasoning. Faith is founded in God and settled amid plans, emotions, and hopes. What I received was an epiphany – I can be thankful, not just in the midst of loss, but even for the loss itself. The peace which began to flood my soul was evidence of Gods gift and mercy.
Thankfulness is not just for the celebration of harvests or good fortune, it is the Believer’s anchor in God’s faithfulness and grace. “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.” (Col. 2:6-7) We do give thanks at all times. Nehemiah assigned two large choirs to give thanks at the dedication of the Temple, one traveling along the wall in one direction and the other in the opposite direction. (Neh. 12:31-39) David gave thanks for the lord’s righteousness, for His goodness, Holy name, mercies, deliverance, but mostly for His unfailing love.
“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (1 Thess. 5:16-18) God’s love is our inheritance and constant unconditional promise as His children. Whatever comes we have assurance that it is not outside God’s sovereign purposes or His loving kindness. In this world we have difficulty, pressure, and trouble, but His response to us is, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33) Our attitude is not subject to the circumstances of this world, but the lovingkindness of our King who endured the world’s scorn, shame, misery and injustice. Our journey leads along that same pathway to a glorious destiny in the presence of God. When we see our own physical decline and that of a broken world seemingly full of evil, we still have every reason to give thanks to our redeemer and deliverer, Yeshua Messiah, (Jesus’ Hebrew name). Thank you Lord for your unfailing love for us; give us a vision of your triumphant resurrection over death and anything that seeks to hinder your will in us. (Eph. 1:16-21)