Tag Archive | 1 Thessalonians 5:18

Thanks for my trials!

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give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:8

In All circumstances?

How can we be thankful for the not so good circumstances?

   I have come to understand the answer to this question quite vividly as I was counseled by God during the writing of Fiery Darts.

   For too many years, my walk with God was characterized by more defeat than victory. Then, just a few years ago, I began to experience a gradual, yet powerful, transformation in my faith walk. As God continued to shed light on the darkness, which had plagued my walk with Him, I began to identify the source of my defeat. It became glaringly clear that negative thinking was at the core of my problematic walk with God. p. 14  FD 3rd edition

The Results?

   I learned to identify the great civil war (p.44 FD) that was going on within me. Eventually, I became more skilled in  distinguishing between the thoughts originating from my flesh, my natural bent, and those which were being whispered to me by God.      

     Finally, the attacks from my enemy, which were designed for my defeat, began to fall short of their mark. With every trial, I gained more strength, as long as I saw it from God’s perspective and rejected the fiery darts!

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds,  because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. James 1:2-3 NIV

The reason I can be thankful for the trials?

    Some trials I continue to wrestle with! But now instead of despair, I know joy. Instead of defeat, I know victory! It’s God’s battle plan for our trials. 

to bestow on them a crown of beauty
instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the Lord
for the display of his splendor. Isaiah 61:3, NIV

Unleashing the power of thankfulness!

1 Thessalonians 5:18 ESV 

Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

Ephesians 5:20 ESV 

Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,

Philippians 4:6 ESV 

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Colossians 4:2 ESV

Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving.

In reading the above verses identify the common charge?

Yep, giving thanks!

When are we to give thanks?

Always, in every circumstance, for everything, in everything, in prayer!

   But ask yourself this question. When do I give God thanks? Is it at the dinner table, or when God has given me something that I need or especially when He gives me something I want? 

Okay, now ask yourself another question. Do I thank God when I am facing problems?

   In all likelihood the last thing we feel like doing when we are burdened with problems is to offer God thanks. Instead, we want to be free of them and will immediately ask God to deliver us from them. And sometimes in our own strength we will design a solution which often just trades one set of problems for another. The weight of our burden only grows heavier!

   Often when problems beset us we just can’t seem to focus on anything but those problems. Our thoughts are consumed with the problems. We think about them all the time because we are analyzing them and trying to figure out what we should do. We bend to the temptation to voice our thoughts about the problem to those who will listen. Therefore just like Peter, because our eyes are fixed on  the storm, we begin sinking. (Matthew 14:29)

Ah, but isn’t that just what a fiery dart is designed to do?

Yet, when we decide to take our focus off the problems and begin thanking God in those problems  the power to turn evil into good is unleashed.

   Therefore, think about the problems you are now facing. Would you like for God to turn those problems into something that produces good in your life? Of course you do, but beware Satan would much rather have you sink.