By Carlos “Chuck” Spencer
Gratitude is a theme which is prevalent throughout holy scripture. In general terms, gratitude relates to thankfulness and involves a willingness to show an appreciation for something and to return kindness. The Apostle Paul wrote in 1 Thessalonians 5:18 (KJV): “In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” Gratitude is considered a virtue and persons who demonstrate a sense of gratitude are usually more at peace and generally do well.
We all know individuals who have endured hardship and misfortune, and some are still living through a difficult season. For whatever reason these people might not be experiencing the best of times and it is reasonable to understand their propensity for bitterness and frustration. A feeling of gratitude might be a fleeting disposition, but one is admonished to keep the faith. 1 Chronicles 16:34 (KJV) tells us, “O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever.”
Furthermore, Psalm 118:24 (KJV) states: “This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.” It requires a good deal of courage and inner strength to remain steadfast and grateful for one’s many blessings during a challenging season. But our relationship with God is precious and this relationship will see us through. Believers know this only too well from personal experience.
Our ability to be grateful and thankful to God is directly linked to our decision to trust Him. Once we accept that God is the source of all that we have, the concept of gratitude becomes more of a way of life. Most of us do not usually turn to prayer if we are able to resolve issues on our own. This is generally how we are as human beings. However, when our circumstances become so dire and God is all that we realistically have, the trust factor normally increases as we become completely reliant on Our Creator for a positive outcome. The thanks and praises usually increase, and they tend to become much more authentic. Psalm 33:18 (KJV) tells us: “Behold, the eye of the Lord is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy.”
Over time we learn to rely totally on God by identifying and recognising the power of His word. There is no other source available to us that enables our faith to grow at such a profound level, and consequently our trust in God. This is the process that leads to increased gratitude. Scripture in the form of 1 Chronicles 23:30 (KJV) records: “And to stand every morning to thank and praise the Lord, and likewise at even.”
As believers we could never praise Him sufficiently, particularly when one considers His grace and many blessings. Amen. Thanks be to God for the sharing of His word.