Thankfulness has to be worked at in our daily lives, especially for the little things in life that we take so easily for granted. Yet, it’s one of those things we can easily do, and which pleases God. He hates grumbling, as is demonstrated in the Old Testament, when so many of the Israelites died in the wilderness after they grumbled against God.
They’d just been a part of one of the greatest miracles ever witnessed by mankind, when God had set the whole nation free from slavery and the tyranny of their enemies. But rejoicing soon turned to complaining when they had to trust God for their daily bread.
How quickly we complain when things don’t seem to turn out the way we think they should. And I wonder how many blessings we deprive ourselves of, because we haven’t cultivated a spirit of thankfulness. In Luke 17:11-19, Jesus healed ten lepers, but only one returned to give Him thanks.
I was encouraged to think about my own thankfulness to God again recently, after listening to the testimony of a man, whose daughter was progressively healed, after he listened to the Word of God encouraging him to be thankful for every little ‘cloud the size of a man’s hand’. The cloud represented every tiny sign of healing, and the more he thanked God and celebrated every sign, the more her healing increased. He was obedient to the leading of God’s voice and entered into the joy and favour that God had stored up for him and his family. In the account of 1 Kings 18:41 onwards, the cloud became a precursor to a deluge of rain, as God performed a miracle on Elijah’s behalf. A tiny sign of blessing can become the doorway to a deluge if we’re thankful enough.
So, God would encourage us today to form the habit of thanking Him, ‘For eye hath not seen, neither ear heard, neither hath it entered into the heart of man, the things that God hath prepared for them that love Him’ (1 Corinthians 2:9). We can thank God for Jesus’ death and resurrection, for without this none of us could have entered into eternal life. We can thank Him for the beauty of creation, every act of kindness, every word of encouragement, our healing, the joy of belonging to Him, His mercies that are new every morning, and many, many, more things.
And even when the way is difficult, and we can’t see the way ahead, remember, He has the bigger picture. We’re safe in His hands. Let’s not allow the spirit of un-thankfulness to choke God’s word in our hearts in times of testing.
We’re highly favoured indeed. Let’s be thankful.
Prayer: Dear heavenly Father, help me to please You by being more thankful each day. Please forgive me for the times in my life when I’ve grumbled, and taken You and all You’ve done for granted. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
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