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Colossians 3:15 says to always be thankful. Verse 16 says to sing with thankful hearts, and verse 17 says that whatever we do or say, we need to be giving thanks to God. It’s not easy to always give thanks, but if God commands it—like he does three times right here in Colossians 3—then it’s not impossible.
Did you notice how the instructions to us in Colossians 3:12, 13 and 14 make it possible to express the thankfulness required of us in verses 15, 16 and 17? Verse 12 says to clothe ourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Verse 13 says to make allowance for each other’s faults and forgive others. And verse 15 says to love above all else and to let peace rule in our hearts. Do you see how following these instructions pave the way to an attitude of gratitude?
It’s not easy to make the choice to always be thankful. Sometimes thankfulness seems impossible. Can I really thank God when everything falls apart? I’m reminded of Psalm 34:1, which says, “I will extol the Lord at all times; his praise will always be on my lips” (NIV). To extol is to kneel and to bless God as an act of adoration. To extol is to praise enthusiastically.
Episodes 94 and 95 of the Believe & Speak podcast focus on Psalm 34:1-10, and address the benefits of extoling God in seasons of lack or fear or shame. If you’re having a hard time finding reasons to be thankful, I encourage you to listen to both of those episodes from last year. It will help you let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your life so that you can be thankful.
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This week’s scripture: Colossians 3:12-17