Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Colossians 3:15
There is a prerequisite to gratitude in the Word of God. God doesn’t just expect us to find thankfulness within ourselves and offer it up. He knows it must have a source, a place from which it flows. Jesus gave thanks when He offered the loaves to the thousands. He also gave thanks before calling forth Lazarus from the grave. He did this not in just grabbing up things to be thankful for but rather as an act of submission to the Father. He gave thanks that the Father hears. This gratitude overflowed from a place of dependance to the Father. He, though fully God Himself, depended on the Father to hear Him in order to offer the loaves. He depended on the Father to hear Him in order to raise the dead and for the sake of those listening around Him.
God invites us also to give thanks from a source of dependance. Without dependance on God we have nothing to offer. That is way Paul invites the church of Colossae first to let the peace of Christ have the rule and reign of their heart before they could offer gratitude. Honestly gratitude or lack thereof will always come from the place of rulership. Who or what rules your heart?
When we are in the place of authority over our own life, we lack gratitude. If we see ourselves as the source then we might offer ourselves a pat on the back but not exactly gratitude. And the reverse occurs too, because we then smack ourselves when we fail because we wrongly think that all things come from self. It’s all up to us and we rule our own failing destiny.
When we place someone else as the one who have rule, we might thank them for what they have done we do not overflow with gratitude unless that Person is Christ. When Christ alone has rule over us, HE determines our mood, thoughts, attitudes and actions. He is the Source from which we pull, fill and receive. Then He is the One to which we owe gratitude. When we let Him rule, we are guarded by His peace. Our hearts and minds are changed, and we then are not thanks givers but gratitude livers. We begin to live in gratitude for all things, recognizing they all come from His good provision.
This Thanksgiving what if rather than trying to reach in and be a thanks giver from the empty well within us, what if we turned the rule of our hearts over to Jesus? What if we surrender to His rule and reign of peace over our thoughts, attitudes and minds and then just let the overflow of gratitude be abundant?
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