"Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful." Colossians 3:15
As you know if you have been following my blogs, I have been commenting on thankfulness the entire month of November. It has been helpful to me to concentrate on the topic of thankfulness for that period of time. One thing it confirms is that I do not as thankful as I need to be.
This verse gives us some insights on why it is so important to be thankful and what that means.
Thankfulness indicates that you are at peace, "Let the peace of God rule in your heart...." Having a thankful heart indicates that you have found peace with God. How? By surrendering to His reign and rule in your heart. When you allow Him to be the Lord of your life, one of the by-products is a thankful heart. That happens because you come to appreciate His victory. He has won the victory over sin and death by virture of His atoning death and resurrection. When you surrender to Him, His victory becomes your victory! You also come to appreciate His value. Until you surrender everything to Him you will not understand that He is WORTH everything! He adds value to everything and everyone Who He touches. Anything that is separated from Him loses value.
Thankfulness indicates that you are at peace with yourself. In order to make Jesus your Lord, you have to confess that He is God and you aren't. That is the essence of surrender. When you stop striving against Him you can begin to serve Him. As you serve Him you gain a growing understanding of His value TO you and THROUGH you. As Jesus said to His disciples, "without me you can do nothing." And, as Paul confessed, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."
Thankfulness also indicates that you have God's vision, "since as members of one body you are called to peace." When you are at peace with God you not only realize His victory and His value but you gain His vision. You see life as He sees it. You see time and eternity as He sees it. You see people as He sees them. You see His Kingdom as He sees it. When you are at peace with God and at one with His purpose, life gets good, and when life is better than it has ever been you become thankful!
Thankfulness grows out of relationship with the God of peace. It is one of the fruits of the Lordship of Christ. So, if you are struggling with maintaining a thankful spirit that is the first place to look. Are you surrendered to the Lordship of Christ?
What a great time to check it out! As we move from Thanksgiving to the Advent Season, examine your heart over the Lordship issue. Do the hard work. Ask the hard questions. It isn't easy but it is worth it! You'll be thankful!