by Beverly Ward
March 6, 2022
From Science: Behavioral science informs us that expressing gratitude to another person is one of the best practices for our well-being, especially when we are feeling down. It is a great way to lift your mood, build relationships, and it encourages a focus on the positive in yourself and in others.
In the New Testament, gratitude is a common theme. In 1 Thessalonians, the apostle Paul shares this with new Christians in Thessalonica, Rome. Paul’s beliefs about gratitude were deeply rooted in his understandings about God; he was convinced that, in any and all circumstances, God was at work on behalf of his people and he could therefore urge the Thessalonians to “give thanks in all circumstances”. This was true even if the circumstances involved the death of a believer because, even though death was an awful reality, it was not the last word or act. The last word or act belongs to God, and it is resurrection and new life.
“Rejoice always and delight in your faith; be unceasing and persistent in prayer; in every situation [no matter what the circumstances] be thankful and continually give thanks to God; for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.” (1Thessalonians 5:16-18, AMP).
In the Old Testament, in Numbers 6, God told Moses to have Aaron and his sons bless the children of Israel with an extraordinary pronouncement of security, grace, and peace. This prayer is known as the Benediction. It is one of the oldest poems in the Bible. The blessing, packed full of meaning, is a beautiful way to say thank you to someone you love:
“The Lord bless you and keep you; The Lord make His face shine upon you and be gracious to you; The Lord turn His face toward you and give you peace”. (Numbers 6:24-26, NIV)
Action Plan: Meditate on the scriptures above by thoughtfully reading each verse; take time to reflect on each word. Allow these life-giving words to shape your thoughts and feelings as you bring to mind one person you know who has made your life better in a meaningful way. Choose a way to let them know this week that you are grateful for them, do this in writing: a text message, e-mail or hand-written note.
Bless yourself by taking in a phenomenal performance of The Blessing by Kari Jobe