Built into the worship of God is an attitude of thanksgiving. God instructs Moses to teach the Levites and people of Israel concerning the sacrifices, which at that time were the form of worship they were to following. In this form, God included “offerings of thanksgiving” that were to be giving along with the other offerings (Leviticus 7:12-15; 22:29). Nehemiah instructed Levites to be in charge of “songs of thanksgiving” (Nehemiah 12:8). This is very understandable considering the recovery God gave Jerusalem through much testing.
It is common in the Psalms to find instructions and exhortations to be thankful to the Lord (Ps. 26:7; 50:14,23; 69:30; 95:2; 100:4; 107:22; 116:17; 147:7 – “Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving”). After disobedience and in sudden confinement in a fish’s belly, Jonah said, “But I with the voice of thanksgiving will sacrifice to You; what I have vowed I will pay. Salvation belongs to the Lord!” (Jonah 2:9). This is a great lesson for us when God takes us through trials; do we turn with a thankful heart to the Lord for teaching us by times of difficulty?
How is your ‘season of thanksgiving’? Consider what Paul wrote in his second letter; “give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Thessalonians 5:18). It is not a question of whether I feel thankful or happy about my circumstances, but realizing that God is over my life and in control of everything I go through, it is important for me to be thankful knowing that He is working all things for good, for His glory and pleasure.
DO THIS: take a piece of paper and write a list of all the things you should be thankful for; both the pleasant and the difficult. You will be surprised at how much God is using circumstances to bless you and work His will in you.
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