Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.(1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 ESV)
I suppose I expected this eventually, it is logical that eucharisteo would bring me to this point. A convergence of truths which are being woven into my life.
Giving thanks, searching for joy, fighting for faith, conviction that God is sovereign, trusting His word, and struggling with the failings of life. Give thanks in all circumstances.
I began this journey of gratitude as a means to fight for joy, and an act of obedience because I know we are commanded to give thanks but am not very good at doing it. So I began counting God’s blessings as I noticed them. Generally I was noticing the things that I was glad God has placed in my life. Give thanks in all circumstances.
But God has bigger dreams for me than merely being happy. It is God’s will that I rejoice in Him, always (Philippians 4:4).
In His mercy God has gently led me this far. It seems that now there are some lessons I really need to learn. Hard lessons about accepting trials and suffering as a gift from my loving Father who is creating me in the His image. Just as the Son of God learned obedience in what he suffered, I am seeing that this is a path none of us can avoid if we follow Christ (Hebrews 5:8).
For a long time I have tried to avoid the path of obedience through suffering, it is time to repent (turn) and begin trudging the way I am being led. Not only plodding along, but rejoicing as I do. Giving thanks in all circumstances.
Gifts I have noticed this week (#501 – #512):
501) Opportunity to do some outside work today.
502) Sunshine after working nights.
503) Flowers in midwinter.
504) Muscle-tiredness as a welcome change from weary-headedness.
505) Watching old movies of the kids when they were babies.
506) Tired girls after sleep-overs.
507) 2-year-old up in the night unwell – opportunity to show him a father’s love by giving him medicine and cuddles.
508) Depression – causing me to look closer at where my hopes are placed.
509) The neighbour’s dog barking loudly, it is happy (joy) to see them come home.
510) My irritability – a reminder that I am setting my happiness upon trivial comforts.
511) A crisp, clear, cold winter’s day.
512) Noticing the storms clouds before setting out to walk to work (I will take the bus now!)