At one point, the Apostle Paul prayed for the Colossian believers to have a knowledge of God’s will with spiritual wisdom and understanding.
And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light.
That’s a long sentence, but it has a great message for us. We’re told that we should live a life worthy of the Lord. Our lives should reflect His character since we’re called to live as His ambassadors. But how is that to be accomplished?
It also says that we should please Him in every way. This is the only place in Scripture that particular word is used. It means to have the desire to please someone – to want to make them happy.
I realize that sometimes we make big mistakes and fall short of this goal. It’s good to know that if the desire’s there, then the Lord is pleased with us.
However, it can’t just end with the desire to please Him. This desire is not just an internal part of me; it has to be manifested in how I live.
According to Paul, it’s shown forth as I bear fruit, growing, and allowing His power to work in me. And right along with this, I need to be joyfully giving thanks to the Lord.
Please understand that there are two ways we view life when faced with challenges that we can’t change. The first is to tolerate them with grumbling and complaining. The other is to come at them with the knowledge that God has full dominion over everything and everybody.
Looking at life’s problems in this last way allows us to rejoice that God’s power will work in us. Then it will be evident to the world around us that God is still on the throne.
I love that phrase, “…joyfully giving thanks to the Father…” Thanking God with joy is what we need in in the challenging situations that we face all the time.
But this kind of response will only happen as we spend time with Him. Being in His presence allows us to be strengthened by His Spirit. It gives us the knowledge and faith that Christ is in control.
The word translated giving thanks is a part of speech that indicates Paul is not just talking about Thanksgiving Day. It’s all about a lifestyle of giving thanks to God continually.
Keep your thankfulness to God going throughout the year. It will change your whole outlook on life.
Question: What are you thankful for this season?
© Nick Zaccardi 2017