For the past three weeks, Shelly and I have been breaking down 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18. The first week we focused on what it means to "be joyful always". We all have our moments but it's more about where we set our focus. We can either choose - good verses evil, right verses wrong, light verses dark. It's completely up to us. We get to choose but God wants us to choose joy. Last week was another doozie - pray continually. I received so many sweet comments that let me know I was not alone in misunderstanding this in the beginning. I love the way Alison from Life of Scoop explained it - "My prayer life is less than perfect, but my husband reminds me often that prayer doesn't have to be long, drawn-out conversations with God. Instead, it can be one sentence, a thought, a cry, expressing a fear - literally all day long communication like I text my husband!". Exactly!!! It's more of a continuous text message with God versus a long drawn out conversation. I think I've got it now!
And that brings us to today - give thanks in all circumstances. Really, God? You want me to be thankful for EVERYTHING? Even when things don't go my way? Even during the bad times? Even when the unimaginable happens?! Let's look at this a different way...no matter what, there is always, ALWAYS something to be thankful for! And even during the dark times we can be thankful that our Savior is the Light. If you are anything like me, I'm always digging needing a little bit more. How about this? Isn't this awesome?!
Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God. That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good.
EVERY detail is being worked into something good! Isn't that amazing?! And, don't think the reference to "waiting" was lost on me. :)
You may be more familiar with this version of Romans 8:28:
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. (NIV)
Always. Continually. In all circumstances. He doesn't leave much out, huh?
I'm so excited to join Shelly again this week for our Attitude of Gratitude challenge and we would love for you to join us! So, what is an Attitude of Gratitude challenge? It's intentionally choosing to look for the good. See the good, do good, BE the good! We hope you will consider joining us today and next Thursday to link up your posts on what you are thankful for. Next Thursday is Thanksgiving and we are sure everyone will be with their families. Please enjoy your time with them - the link-up will stay open through the first of December.
*safety - This is an obvious one after the attack on Paris last weekend. I'm also thankful for the men and women who place themselves in harm's way just to keep us safe.
*coaches - Hope wrapped up her soccer season this past weekend and I'm so thankful for volunteer coaches who give of their talents, patience, and most of all, time. She had a great first season and is looking forward to playing again in the spring.
*meteorologists - Kind of random, I know, but early, early Tuesday morning (think 4am!) we were notified on our phones via multiple emergency alerts that we were under a Tornado Warning and that we needed to take cover. We quickly turned on our local news to see what was developing. I'm so thankful for the countless people working all kinds of crazy hours to ensure that we are kept informed and safe during impending weather. Thankfully as soon as we got everyone to our safe spot, the worst part of the storm was over and no tornado developed!
*OCD - Yes, you read that correctly, I was actually able to find a reason to be thankful for my OCD this week. In case you don't know you can read more here, but for those of you who are aware, you know one of the symptoms I struggle with most is obsessive thoughts that repeat in my head on a continuous loop. Super hard to explain but this week it proved to be a positive after stopping by the Giving Tree at my daughter's school. Hang with me - I promise this will make sense soon! :) As I was going through the needs, the majority of the kids were asking for a coat. A coat. That's it! So, my OCD went in to overdrive and I could.not.stop.thinking about ways to get coats for these children. So, while normally I want to curse my OCD, I do believe that God gave it to me for a reason - maybe it's to find ways to help people and He won't let me stop thinking about it till the needs are filled!
*friends - I'm thankful for friends who will listen to my crazy ideas and ask, "how can I help?".
*our kids' schools - God must have hand-picked our kiddos' teachers this year! Each kiddo feels valued, important, and cared about and that makes this mama's heart swell with joy!
*YOU! - Thank you so much for sharing this journey with Shelly and I! We are so thankful that you are sharing your hearts. I have loved reading each and every post shared here and I look forward to what you will share with us today and next week. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!!!
What about you? What you you grateful for?
Now it's time to link up! The only rule we have is that you share original content and have an Attitude of Gratitude! So grab our button and link up today!