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  • Writer's picturePastor Curtis A. May

Give Thanks for the Good the Bad and the Usual.

Article for Sunday Dec 17, 2023

1 Thessalonians 5:16–18 16Rejoice always, 17pray without ceasing, 18give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

We pray for help, and we pray to give thanks.  We always need help, and we always have everything to be thankful for.  Pray without ending, pray all day long, and pray to the one who loves you to life, pray to Yahweh.

Giving thanks for the good things in our life is easy but how many times do we truly thank our Lord for those good things?  Giving thanks for the bad things in our life might seem ridiculous to many but have you thought to thank God for getting you through those bad times?  Have you thought of thanking God for all you have learned through those bad times.

We always, always have something to thank God for.  We don’t always think about praying unendingly to our God for every time we crossed the road and did not get ran over.  Do you thank God for slowing you down when traffic is heavy, and you have to wait for the right time to cross the road?  You see the right time for everything when given to you is worth thanking our God for.  For at the right time Jesus died for us (Romans 5:6).  It is even in the simpleness of life that we should be in prayer and be thankful for the blade of grass that brushes between our toes and the wind that blows through our hair.

We have a loving God who waits to hear you call upon His name.  it is this same loving God who went to great lengths to give us an eternal life so we could be with Him and He can be with us.  Prayer communicates your heart’s desire to God, and His answer is His heart’s desire to you, especially when He says no or wait-ahold-it.

1 Thessalonians 5:19–22 19Do not quench the Spirit. 20Do not despise prophecies, 21but test everything; hold fast what is good. 22Abstain from every form of evil.

When you have someone who wants to listen to you when you are happy and when you are sad and hurt, then you know you have someone who truly loves you.  So, when that loving person gives you advice you might want to listen.  All of the Holy Scriptures are God’s advice.

There are many people in this sinful world who will only listen to their desires.  Who prospers from this kind of listening?  Not even the person who only listens to their desires.  But Satan prospers from all the times we listen to our sinful desires and close our minds and heart to our God who loves us.

We are all worse than teenagers.  We know a lot, but we fail to learn from our past.  We still think if we just rename it and try it again it will work and then don’t understand when it doesn’t.  Chaos is still chaos by any other name.  And if that doesn’t work, we’ll try to disprove what we know works.  Worldly, worldly is wordy, wordy and has no meaning to substantiate it.

Isaiah 61:4 4They shall build up the ancient ruins; they shall raise up the former devastations; they shall repair the ruined cities, the devastations of many generations. . . .

We and or they, the Jews, might think that Jerusalem will once again be restored.  But there is to be a New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:2), I believe on the New Earth, under the New Heavens.  Not the United States of America as I have heard some denominations say.  But that the New Jerusalem will “come down from heaven directly from God.” (Revelation 21:2) 

The devastation is not just from the people outside of the Jewish religion, but those inside the Jewish religion as well (read the O.T.).  I tell you the truth; our destruction will not be just those outside of the United States of America but by its own citizens too (read the O.T & N.T.). 

We must learn the lessons of the past of God’s people if we are going to continue to be the people of God.  Don’t turn your back on God and you won’t be turned down by God.  All believers are stronger with the word of God and do not disapprove of God’s word because it goes against their perverted desires.

Isaiah 61:8–9 8For I the Lord love justice; I hate robbery and wrong; I will faithfully give them their recompense, and I will make an everlasting covenant with them.  9Their offspring shall be known among the nations, and their descendants in the midst of the peoples; all who see them shall acknowledge them, that they are an offspring the Lord has blessed.

God has made an everlasting covenant with His first chosen.  God still loves them and loves us, (Genesis 17:13), and will not forsake them (Psalms 89:30-34; 1 King 6:13) or us (Hebrews 12:5).

1 Thessalonians 5:23–24 23Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it.

We should by now and by study, know that God loves us.  We do know our Father in heaven sent His only Son Jesus Christ to teach, to suffer, and to die for sinners though we be.  And not just for the time but for all time, past, present, and future.  We have a God who loves us even when we do not show our love and obedience to Him.  This is salvation that Jesus died for sinners so they can believe and be saved.  Amen.

Written by Pastor Curtis A. May


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