From your friends at
Flaming Sword Communications Group
“a practical approach to faith”
“Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.“
This week’s THEOLOGICAL FOCUS is on GRATITUDE
Nothing demonstrates an appreciation for the receipt of a gift better than simply being thankful for it. Sometimes, people can “fake the funk” and speak many platitudes, but this may or may not be heart-felt. True gratitude is as humble as it is genuine. The demarcation point between the world and our faith in Jesus Christ is in the area of gratitude. Gratitude is the absolute hallmark of the Christian faith and the antithesis of worldly thinking.
For example, one who loves the world and worldly things will always want more, no matter how much they get. In fact this mindset actually demands more. It may seem like demanding more than you have is chasing after happiness, but that’s a lie. When you chase after happiness, you find neither truth nor happiness. But when you pursue truth, happiness tags along as a fringe benefit.
If you find yourself spending more time wanting more than God has given you, it may be time to focus your thoughts back to Calvary. This really helps us. On that rocky hill, Jesus got hammered onto a Roman cross after being tortured and bloodied beyond belief. He did this because it was the only way to save us from our wretched sins. He did this out of His great love for those who love Him. He did this for us.
It’s a natural human instinct to demand things of God. But it’s unnatural for God to humble Himself into a frail human body and take the torture we so richly deserve. Only biblical Christianity has a God who instead of demanding His followers die for Him, He died for us. You won’t find that anywhere else.
When you’re having a lousy day, think about Calvary. Think about a bloodied Savior who didn’t have to do what He did. Then, see if you’re still feeling a sense of demanding for what you don’t have. Instead, we should all cherish everything we actually do have. Cherish every blessing with a heart full of gratitude.
Gratitude conquers the world. Selfishness destroys it.
Check out this short video from theologian John Piper: