Do you know these famous folks were twins?
- Advice columnists Ann Landers and Abigail van Buren (Dear Abby)
- Music makes Maurice and Robin Gibb of the Bee Gees
- Former professional football players Ronde and Tiki Barber
There is another pair of "twins" that God wants us to know. Their names are "In" and "For." In and For are the twin prepositions of thanksgiving:
- Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:18
- Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Ephesians 5:20 ESV
Have you stopped to consider why we give thanks? Some would say, “Well, we give thanks because God tells us to!” And while that is true, the admonitions make sense because of the attributes of God.
- We give thanks because God is sovereign. God, who rules and reigns over everything is able to work everything together for our good. “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28
- We give thanks because God is good. God is all-powerful AND totally good. God never rubs his hands in fiendish delight. It is impossible for God to lie or act contrary to his goodness. “Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!" Psalm 34:8
- We give thanks because God is faithful. Your circumstances may be tough, but God has not forgotten you. “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. 'The Lord is my portion,' says my soul, 'therefore I will hope in him.'” Lamentations 3:22-24
- We give thanks because God never leaves us. Even the best friends come and go, but not God. Tough times don’t scare away the Almighty. The writer of Hebrews reminds us . . . "for he has said, 'I will never leave you nor forsake you.'” Hebrews 13:5
- We give thanks because God is for us. God is personally involved in our lives. David recognized this: "You have kept count of my tossings; put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book? Then my enemies will turn back in the day when I call. This I know, that God is for me.... in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can man do to me?" Psalm 56:8-11.
I needed to be reminded of this when I was rudely awakened this morning at 3:00 a.m. by a noisy compressor in our hotel room. Sunday was a long day, followed by a long drive, which I was hoping would be followed by a good long rest. Didn't happen!
So this morning I am downstairs in the uninhabited breakfast room -- thankful. I am thanking God in this situation and for the unwelcome interruption. God is still in control, God is still good, God is always faithful, God has not left me, and I am resting in the fact that he is still "for me" as he was for David.
My problem is probably pretty light compared to challenges you are facing today, but God is still the same. Give thanks!