1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
16 Rejoice evermore.
17 Pray without ceasing.
18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
The Will of God
by Sarah Seagraves
I love these scriptures! Simple, to the point, easy to memorize. I am going to write about all three, in reverse order.
Recently we heard verse 18 preached about. I think it was Bro. Huizar. He asked the question, “Do you want to know what the will of God is for your life?” All of us do! It is simple…give thanks.
I have a sign on my kitchen wall that states, “There is always, always, always something to be thankful for!” Years ago I read a book entitled, “One Thousand Gifts” by Ann Voskamp. I highly recommend it. When we get in the habit of looking for something to be thankful for it lifts us out of depression, anxiety, and stress. If you write down 3 things every day you will compile a list of 1,095 things in a year.
I started doing this in 2022. I was intentional and wrote them down every day. I made it until March 7th. Still, as I look back over these entries they bring a smile to my face. (Maybe I can make it farther into 2023…it can be a goal at least!)
We were delayed in TX due to covid but I wrote on January 3rd: I am thankful that I received hugs from all 3 of our kids today. I also wrote, I am thankful for a nice meal with my parents. Due to sickness instead of just having 1 week with my parents in December we had 2 weeks and we were able to celebrate New Year’s with them instead of just Christmas. Was sickness fun? No, but there were blessings in the midst of it.
Last night I felt like I was living verse 17. We got a call around 8 pm that my parents’ pastor’s son was missing. He had gone out hunting at 11 AM and wasn’t home by dark. After his wife and father had been out looking for him they called my dad. A long story short, my two brothers, others from the church, search and rescue as well as the state troopers were involved with the search. As the night got longer, the prayers continued. I am so thankful for the word of God that brought comfort. I listened to Sis. Mickey Mangun sing songs of worship and thanksgiving via the streaming of their church service. I listened and read the word through the night. I prayed. At 5 am the call came that my brothers had found their friend. By 8:15 am my dad and brothers were home and the one who was lost was on his way to the hospital. Miraculously no frostbite and he was discharged by 10:50 am!
That brings me to verse 16. What rejoicing there has been ALL DAY!!! I have had days and situations that didn’t turn out this way. But even then, in the midst of sorrow when our prayers weren’t answered as we had hoped, we still had something to rejoice about. We would still pray. We would still give thanks. How? Our TRUST is in the Lord. He goes before us, comes behind and is even beside us walking through the journey called life.