Give Thanks in All Circumstances

Last week I signed up for Medicare.  Tuesday, I turned 65.  Perhaps surprising to some, I feel incredibly good.  In some respects, this is the best I have felt in my life.  At 13-14 my back was sore from getting hit playing football.  At 28, I was swimming a mile 2-3 times a week, but I feel physically a lot better at this stage of my life.  My exercise program now is more comprehensive and my body feels great.

In the weeks leading up to the birthday I have been giving thanks to God for every good and perfect gift.  I thank the Lord for my disappointments and challenges, because through it all I see the hand work of God.  When I think about my life, on one hand I wonder how did the time pass so quickly.  My children are grown and have never caused me any real problems.  I watched my eldest son work with his daughter, my granddaughter, at a table in a gelato shop and smiled when I thought about all the nights I made him and his younger brother do their homework while I sat through evening community meetings, political meetings and church meetings.  Life has a way of circling around!  I feel good because both of my children are doing well, in spite of the “Pick-up game” type of parenting Denise and I suffered them through.  On another hand, I smile when I think about every accomplishment, achievement, aspiration I have experienced.  I also think about the mountains I have climbed, the valleys I have traveled and the streams, lakes and oceans I have swam.  In all things, I see God and what I see is good.

1 Thessalonians 5: 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you[1]

Questions for Reflection:

  1. When has it been difficult for you to give thanks?
  2. Why do you think it is the will of God for humans to give thanks in all circumstances?
  3. What is the point of giving thanks when things go wrong and are disappointing?

 

Prayer: Lord I try to thank you in all circumstances!  I thank you in my joy, I thank you in my sadness.  I thank you for the people who have been mean and difficult.  For it is through their attitude I see your love for my life more completely.  I thank you for disappointments because each mountain has taught me to climb higher.  It is easy to give thanks when things are going my way.  I thank you for every blessing.  I thank you for every joy.  I thank you for my challenges.  I thank you for every success.  Though it all, I see you, Lord.  I see your goodness, mercy and promise for a better future.  Through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior I pray.  Amen.

 

Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Nathan Hood

[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (1 Th 5:18). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.