Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is Godâ€™s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
One of the things that I am not very consistent about is counting my blessings; writing them down. If I am going to lay my requests before God, then it makes sense for me to also lay all the blessings He has given me.
Counting the gifts and blessings that God has given me keeps my eyes on the many, many reasons for me to rejoice in my life. It reminds me in tangible ways how extravagant my Heavenly Father is. Without taking time to do this will leave me too focused on the answers I havenâ€™t received yet or the ways that I may wonder if an answer is going to come!
I was reading the story again of Abraham and Sarah. I get â€œantsyâ€ and â€œstressedâ€ if God doesnâ€™t answer my request or question in the next hour or day or week! Abraham and Sarah had to wait DECADES to see the answer to their request about a child!
And what about Israelâ€™s promise from God for a Savior? That answer came not in days but in HUNDREDS of YEARS! Some are still waiting! In that context maybe their â€˜blindnessâ€™ is a little easier to understand!
The list of Godâ€™s gifts are not limited to Scriptures that have lists like 1 Thessalonians, Romans 6:23 and chapter 12, and 1 Corinthians 12 and 14. When I think of gifts I always remember my friend, Hannah, who has made these beautiful, HUGE banners that when you look at them you feel yourself PULLED into worship of God and want to fall to your knees in thanksgiving! Now banner making is not listed in any of the above Scriptures or any Scripture I can remember. Does that make her gift â€“ not a gift? NO! When you see one â€“ you KNOW it is a gift from God! Another friend of mine, Erin, writes wonderful worship dramas and has a great ability to teach them. Is that listed in the Bible? NO!
Each one should use whatever gift he has receive TO SERVE OTHERS, faithfully administering GODâ€™S GRACE in its VARIOUS forms. 1 Peter 4:10 (emphasis mine)
Hereâ€™s another word about Godâ€™s grace. It comes to us from the Father in the form of gifts that we are to use to serve others. It comes in many types of gifts. It makes sense to me that if Godâ€™s children are so diverse â€“ so will be the gifts that He has given to each of us.
God is LAVISH â€“ EXTRAVAGANT â€“ OVER THE TOP â€“ with His love for us and so I am going to stop right now and begin the list of all the ways that God has poured out His love (grace!) to me! I may have to take off my socks to count! I may have to even ask Henry to remove his socks!!! J