And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. (Colossians 3:15)
And Be Thankful
Paul describes the character of the Christian as being a changed person. Everything in the life of those who profess to serve Jesus Christ focuses on things from the Father’s viewpoint, not the earthly. There is an active work of removing those hindrances that challenge the heart of righteousness like fornication, impurity, lust, anger, slander, and ungodly language (and many more). The sinful nature of the old man is stripped away to renew the spirit with the godly character of Jesus Christ. As the elect of God, the Christian clothes his life with tender mercy, kindness, humility, meekness, and all the attributes that help him dwell in favor of God. There is a significant change that takes place for the Christian.
In the midst of all the character traits changing the heart for the glory of God is the simple admonition to be thankful. Many changes must take place that will challenge the courage of the faithful to be like Christ, but nothing is more essential than remembering to be thankful. If there was a trait that was easier to implement in life, being thankful should be at the top of the list. It does not require deep intellectual insight to find a reason to be thankful. Three words sum up the spirit of a soul saved from the wrath of God and the promise of eternal life. A thankful spirit knows the value of salvation, the glory of divine mercy, and the joy of saving grace. Being thankful constantly tells God how grateful it is to know He loves and cares for His children.
“And be thankful” is not a hard concept to accept. It strips away the pride of boasting, removes the shadow of human wisdom and acknowledges every blessing comes from above without variation or respect of persons. God does not love one person over another. He gave His Son to the world so that all men could come to salvation. The blood of Jesus Christ will take away the sins of anyone who comes to Him with an obedient heart. There is no distinction of grace for one nationality above another. God’s love is for all men if they would but accept His will. Out of the billions of souls that dwell upon the earth, Jesus died for the individual who obeys the word of His Father as if there were no other souls on earth. To be thankful is to know the blessings of God come unmeasured upon His children. How can a soul not be grateful?
The spirit of thanksgiving dwells in the heart of the Christian each day. When a thankful heart only remembers the Lord once a year when the turkey appears, the soul dies with ingratitude. A happy heart awakens each day, seeing the hand of God ready to guide the soul with the eternal grace of His presence. Through the word of God, thanksgiving is learned from the stories of old where God never lies and every promise made was kept – without exception. Thanksgiving rises from knowing that God will keep His word because He is a righteous God. At the end of the day, the soul feels the peace of God ruling their hearts because they have been called in one body – and they are thankful. Thank you, thank you – thank you!