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Rejoice, Pray, and Give Thanks

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Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God
in Christ Jesus for you.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

The Word tells us to rejoice, pray, and give thanks in all circumstances. Why do this when tragedy strikes causing us hurt and pain? We cannot ignore our hurt and pain, because we are created with God given emotions. Every command the Lord gives us is based on his love for us, so how are we benefited when we rejoice, pray, give thanks in times of hardship?

Rejoicing is defined as feeling or showing great joy or delight. We will look at rejoicing and it’s effect on us when life is good, and when life hurts. Science has proven a joyful heart helps us both mentally and physically, helps us to feel better, and gives us more energy. For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he: (Proverbs 23:7). But what do we have to rejoice about when tragedy strikes? When life brings hurt and pain, we run to God with joy in our heart. We have this joy because we know the Lord will sustain us through all things, he will guide us and walk with us, helps us to minister to others that are hurting, and remind us this life temporary and heaven is our home. This joy balances out with our hurt and pain and gives us a divine strength, and the Lord provides comfort through the Holy Spirit. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4).

Praying without ceasing implies maintaining a connection to the Lord. This may sound difficult, but we are actually created by God to have a constant connection to him. If we commune with the Lord with a heart of praise, thankfulness, and guidance, he will enable us to have a connection to him in both our conscious and unconscious minds. He changes us to live for his divine purpose and we know that we are one with God, living as his ambassador. Praying is always needed because talking to the Lord about how we are feeling tends to transfer our hurts to the Lord as we walk in faith. Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always. (1 Chronicles 16:11).

Having a thankful heart is the key to being content, otherwise Satan may attack us telling us we need more to be content. If we practice giving the Lord thanks in all circumstances it will give us his strength to endure. A thankful heart increases our faith, and we will trust the Lord with every situation in life. I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. (Galatians 2: verse 20).

Today walk with a joy filled thankful heart and commune with the Lord. Notice how much better and more secure you can feel because the Lord is close and you are one with him. This is the way God created us to live, always connected to him, because being one with God is the most fulfilling life possible. It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. (Galatians 5:1)

Prayer: Lord, remind me to walk with a thankful heart filled with joy. Help to focus on your love, your blessings, and eternal life. Enable me to commune with you today and to be filled with my divine purpose, to be a light for Christ. Thank you for continually freeing me in Christ and molding me to be more like Christ. In Jesus name, Amen