About a month ago during a time of frustration, I called one of my long time mentors and became very transparent with him giving him the right to instruct and correct. The conversation was divinely directed as it nailed the problem and brought peace. In light of this, I want to share a piece of wisdom that he gave me: “Dustin, don’t be unthankful, be intentional about expecting and looking for Gods assistance.”
In Exodus 16, the children of Israel picked up the bad habit of complaining in the wilderness in spite of the constant hand of God in their lives. I heard a minister say once that complaining is saying to God, “If I were You, I would do it differently.” Too many times, like the children of Israel, we forget all God has done to preserve us and provide for us in our current position. Our focus is on the unfulfilled desire instead of having intentional thanksgiving and expectation of God’s goodness and mercy.
Paul encouraged the church at Thessalonica to give thanks in EVERYTHING.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
Rejoicing is the outward expressing of our inward joy. Consistent prayer is daily fellowship with the Father being sensitive to His voice and obedient to His leading. Thanksgiving, which redirects our attention, is not the passive attitude of accepting that this is all there is. No, thanksgiving is so much more; it’s the bold and constant knowing and reality of our righteousness; it’s the possession of irrepressible joy, which comes from our conscious awareness of God’s favor and protection. Thanksgiving is the lifestyle that knows that everything is about to change, for IT’S HAPPENING right now! We give thanks for our healing because it’s happening right now! We give thanks for the protection of family and friends because it’s happening right now! Our financial breakthrough is happening right now! We know that undeniable favor is splitting the mirage of the enemy’s deception and placing us in an unearned position….say it with me, “Because it’s happening right now!
We must keep the knowledge of all God’s deeds out in the open to remind others and ourselves that it’s happening, not tomorrow, or in a few years but RIGHT NOW! Shout, “It’s happening right now and I got it!”
Psalms 105:1-2 (AMP) O give thanks unto the Lord, call upon His name, make known His doings among the peoples! Sing to Him, sing praises to Him; meditate on and talk of all His marvelous deeds and devoutly praise them.
See, God has made us to be the heirs of His promises, which are in Christ, yes and amen. In our time of fellowship, He tells us of His thoughts of the future and hope that He has planned and laid out for us. Like Sarah, we must judge God faithful to keep His promises and look steadily to Him with hearts full of gratitude.
When we only see the unfulfilled desires or promises of God, we are tempted to complain, sulking in what we think is an unanswered prayer.
It is not unanswered; we are simply fighting the test of time that wants us to forfeit what has rightly been given to us as heirs, and to relinquish God’s full supply for our lives. This is why I go over words that God has spoken to Mandy and me time and time again. God places visions, goals, and speaks promises to our hearts that are beyond our natural abilities and understanding that require divine assistance, so that in their fulfillment He alone gets the glory and honor.
Let’s not become unthankful, but with great expectation look for the goodness of God every day. Allow praise and thanksgiving to bubble up from our hearts being unmoved by distractions knowing ITS HAPPENING RIGHT NOW!
Psalms 100:4-5 Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, And into His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, and bless His name. 5 For the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting, And His truth endures to all generations.
Thanksgiving is the voice of accomplishment, and praise the song of possession through which we stand before Him with complete adoration being embraced by His love.