Dear Faith Partner:
Gratitude changes who we are inside and enables the Lord to shine His love through us as we touch the lives of those around us. As believers, our gratitude should overflow because of the benefits we receive as God’s children. In fact, a thankful heart is a defining characteristic of a godly person because it is an expression of His indwelling presence.
It is so important to bring gratitude to the forefront of our daily lives not just during a special holiday, but all year long. Life does not have to be perfect in order for us to give thanks or to be thankful; we can just choose to be grateful, regardless of our circumstances and situations. Living a life of gratitude is always a choice.
How different would our outlook on life would be if we would choose to have thankful hearts regardless of the situation? Look at the words penned by the Psalmist David as he admonished us, regardless of the challenging circumstances, to endure in thanksgiving.
- “Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him, bless His name. For the Lord is good; His lovingkindness is everlasting and His faithfulness to all generations.” (Psalm 100:4-5)
- “It is good to give thanks to the Lord, and to sing praises to Your name, O Most High; to declare Your lovingkindness in the morning, and Your faithfulness every night.” (Psalm 92:1-2)
What a difference it would make for us, others around us, and in our situations if we replaced complaining with thanksgiving: setting ourselves to look for things to be grateful for throughout each day. As well as complaining, I believe other forms of ingratitude that we must guard ourselves against is when we do not appreciate what the Lord has given to us or when our desire is for something outside of His will. Although it may sound a little silly, it is true. It pleases the Lord when we have an “attitude of gratitude” in all situations and circumstances.
I believe one of the major keys to overflowing gratitude and thanksgiving begins when we acknowledge that Christ alone is responsible for our salvation. He choose each of us before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4) and gave us the gift of faith so we could believe in Him (Ephesians 2:8). As believers, the presence of Jesus in our hearts should cause us to interact with one another with peace and thankfulness. I did not make that up as something that sounds good, look at Colossians 3:15-16 “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.” From the moment we accepted Him as Savior, the Lord began to develop qualities that produces grateful hearts. “So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.” (Colossians 2:6-7)
Paul teaches that we should be thankful because we have sealed relationships. The moment each of us trusted Jesus, our relationship with Him was sealed, and we became children of God. That fact alone ought to create a lifetime of gratitude! Our lives are transformed when we allow heavenly gratitude to fill our hearts and spill over into our daily lives. By fixing our eyes on Jesus and all He has done for us, we can be more than conquerors in whatever situations we face! (Romans 8:37)
Think about how your day would be impacted if when you wake up each morning, you choose to say, “Thank You Lord for this day. Thank You for the blessing and privilege of belonging to You and serving You. Thank You for what You have in store for me today and for what You are going to teach me and do through me this day.” By choosing to be grateful, your daily life would become an illuminating reflection of His grace to the world.
When we make a decision to cultivate a heart-attitude of thanksgiving, God’s presence becomes so evident; as well, gratefulness allows us to sense His delight as we are expressing our gratitude to Him. Thankfulness creates an atmosphere of faith, and our faith pleases Him so much (Hebrews 11:6). An atmosphere of faith and thankfulness also opens the door for God’s miracles to happen! So let’s give Him thanks with a grateful heart today and for evermore – that means every day.
Janice and I have so much to be thankful for and you, our covenant partners, are on that list. We continue to express to God how valuable you are to us and how vital your faithfulness is to this ministry. Thank you very much.
Your Covenant Partner,
MARK YOU CALENDARS EQUIP 2019 – JANUARY 30 – FEBRUARY 1, 2019
The RBPM partner letter will not be mailed after the December 2018 edition. However, you will still be able to read and share the encouragement by retrieving Bishop’s monthly words of wisdom from the ministry website. Next month’s letter will contain specific instructions. Thank you for your patience as we make this administrative change.