Gratitude in the Time of COVID

by Richard Adams on November 23, 2021

Gratitude In The Time of COVID
The Bible says,
                “Give thanks in everything;
                  For this is God’s will
                  For you in Christ  Jesus."
                 (1 Thessalonians 5:18)
 I’ve heard people teach on this verse and look for a loophole.  They point out “It doesn’t say give thanks FOR everything; it says IN everything.” Well, in Ephesians 5:20 we read, “Giving thanks always FOR everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
So rather than splitting prepositional hairs, it’s obvious that God wants you to be thankful ALWAYS.  I don’t thank God FOR COVID-19, but I thank God for WHAT HE IS DOING during this time.  He is waking up the church and teaching us that church is not about a program or a place – the church is made up of redeemed people who continue to worship God and serve each other in creative ways.
I started making a “gratitude list”.  It soon filled up two pages. Here are just a few things on my list:
I’m grateful that:
  • I’m part of a loving church called Shady Oaks;
  • We have a remarkable staff team who are working tirelessly to continue to provide ministry;
  • We have a unified, wise group of Deacons who love Jesus;
  • We have committed Life Group leaders who are still connecting with their groups via Zoom and other means;
  • That my family members are all healthy and safe;
  • That we have enough paper towels/toilet paper for now
The list just went on and on.
Will you make a “gratitude list” today?  See how long you can make it.
Alexander Whyte was a famous Scottish pastor who was famous for beginning every prayer with a word of thanksgiving to God.  There was a particular Sunday when the weather was awful.  It was cold and gray with the temperature hovering near freezing.  A wind was howling driving the rain sideways.  There were only a few parishioners who showed up for church.  And they were waiting to see what their pastor could thank God for on such a miserable day.  Alexander Whyte prayed, “Lord we thank thee…” he paused a moment, then continued, “We thank thee that the weather isn’t like this every day.”
What can you find to be thankful for?
After all, isn’t THIS what Thanksgiving is all about?

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