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            Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.                      
    I Thessalonians 5:18

This week a friend arrived home and discovered her husband had moved out. Two weeks ago another friend’s husband died. Three weeks ago my daughter had a miscarriage. Four weeks ago one of my dearest friends was diagnosed with stage three uterine cancer. This has been a heart-wrenching month.
I Thessalonians 5:18 says give thanks in all circumstances. Am I or these loved ones to be thankful for the terrible things that have happened? Absolutely not! This verse does not say “be thankful for;” it says be thankful in.
All people face heartache, disappointment, difficulties…even death. The believer also faces persecution because of his faith in Jesus. Yet, believers in the midst of these trials can still be thankful. How? By focusing not upon that which is around us, but upon Him who is within us!
We have a Savior who goes with us through the water and the fire (Isaiah 43:2, 3). We have a Savior who will strengthen and uphold us with His righteous right hand (Isaiah 41:10). We have a Savior who will guide us in the way of wisdom and lead us along straight paths (Proverbs 4:11). We have a Savior who will teach and counsel us (Psalm 32:8, John 14:26). We have a Savior who is faithful and can be no other way (2 Timothy 2:13). We have a Savior who has defeated sin and death (Romans 6:23, 8:38-39). 
Numerous times the Bible commands Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever (E.g. Psalm 118, 136). And so, my thanksgiving is not dependent upon people or circumstances. Those are ‘ever-shifting sand.’ My thanksgiving is firm, for my hope is in Christ the unchanging, solid Rock. Even amidst difficulties, I will choose to offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving to the Lord for He is good and His love for me will last forever!
                     “My hope is built on nothing less, than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.                                             I dare not trust the sweetest frame, but wholly lean on Jesus’ name.                                         On Christ the solid Rock I stand; all other ground is sinking sand.”
Jan Burkhart

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