Giving Thanks to God Always
This focus must be deliberate, especially in times of trial: Psalm 57, which David wrote from a cave when Saul was seeking to kill him, is interesting. If you were holed up in a cave with a mad king and his army trying to kill you would you praise? Did you notice how deliberate David is? It’s as if he says, “My heart is steadfast, O God,” and then his heart wavers in fear. So he repeats, “my heart is steadfast!”
Focus on the Father’s sovereignty: The “all things” of Ephesians 5:20 is the same “all things” of Ephesians 1:11, which says that God has predestined us “according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will.” It’s the same “all things” of Ephesians 1:22, which tells us that God “put all things in subjection under His [Christ’s] feet.” As we’ve seen, it’s the same “all things” of Romans 8:28, “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”
Focus on the Father’s love: : (Ps. 103:13), (Heb. 5:8), We need to keep in mind that even earthly fathers see things from a different perspective than their children do. A loving father sees the long-range perspective of what will be good for his children. Our heavenly Father has eternity in view, whereas we usually can’t see much beyond the present. He doesn’t always reveal to us why He does what He does, but He asks us to trust Him as our loving Father, even when we can’t understand His reasons for our trials. To give thanks always for all things, focus deliberately on God’s sovereignty and His love.
Focus on God’s many blessings, but especially on His salvationThe fact that He can be called, “our Lord Jesus Christ” and “our God and Father,” brings into focus the reality of the salvation that He has freely given to us. As John puts it (1 John 3:1), (2:1-7), (2:12-13) Or, as Paul puts it (Rom. 8:32), Read that great chapter, which begins with no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus and ends with absolutely nothing that can separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord, and you will be filled with thankfulness, even in the midst of your trials!