“Thanksgiving is the language of heaven” – A.J. Gossip
A Characteristic of a Christian…
Thankfulness should be a characteristic of a Christian. We should “always give thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Eph. 5:20). And “in everything give thanks, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thes. 5:18).
Thankfulness ought to be genuine and come from the heart. This is in contrast to the godless who “neither glorify Him nor give thanks to Him” (Rom. 1:21).
Give Thanks In All Circumstances…
In 1 Thessalonians 5:18 Paul tells us to “give thanks in all circumstances, because this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
We should be thankful for material blessings but we shouldn’t put them ahead of the God who bestowed those blessings on us. Our attitude should be to “seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all other things [food, clothing, shelter, ect.] will then be given to you as well” (Matt. 7:33) .
Being thankful for good times is easy enough, but Paul tells us to be thankful in “all” circumstances, including trials. So much so that he says that we should “rejoice in our sufferings”. There’s an old saying that comes to mind:
“Glory To God For All Things”
In all things? Why? Because Jesus said that in this world we would have trouble, but He was quick to add that He has overcome the world. We’re reminded that “suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out His love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit” (Rom. 5:3-5 )
Paul goes on to encourage us to be thankful because God makes sure that all things work “for the good of those who love him” (Rom. 8:28). It’s not that all things that happen are good, but that God can cause good to come out of every situation.
We praise Him because trials and hardships do not limit His ability to work in our lives. In fact, when we go through hard times it gives God a chance to do a special work in our life because, “the Lord is near to those with a broken heart” (Ps. 34:18), and His strength “is made perfect in our weakness”. (2 Cor. 12:9) When we are weak, He is strong.
The Importance of Thanksfulness…
In Revelation chapters 4 and 5 we find Creation face to face with Creator in heaven. Creation reacts in two ways: The first reaction is praise – God is perfect and holy and He alone deserves to be worshiped. The second reaction is thankfulness – Although we’re not worthy to stand before God He not only allows us to stand in His presence, He invites us. Jesus promised that if anyone comes to Him, He will not turn them away. (John 6:37)
These thoughts are beyond comprehension! We wonder along with David, “what is man that you are mindful of him?” (Psalm 144:3) The only way to react to the wonderful kindness of God is with a grateful heart. We will be singing songs of thanks to the Lord throughout eternity — “Blessing, and honor, and glory, and power, be unto him that sits upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.” will be our anthem. And thanksgiving will be the language of heaven.