I woke up in the night thinking about the beautiful words in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18. This passage marks one of the very first times I delivered a devotional reflection on scripture. During one summer at Camp Greystone, I stood in the Dining Hall and told the campers these words:
Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
I needed these words for my own heart. I needed the challenge to turn from negativity, complaint, and cynicism. I wondered what it would mean to take this gratitude challenge and, by the power of the Holy Spirit, become a person who knows how to give thanks in all circumstances.
I learned this (and continue to learn this):
[bctt tweet=”Giving thanks acknowledges God’s power, provision, and presence. It’s a new way to see life. It means choosing to look for hidden blessings in the midst of painful things. This is how we give thanks in all circumstances.”]
I took the challenge. I began to train my mind in God’s will for my life: thanksgiving.