“GIVE THANKS WITH A THANKFUL HEART.” So begins one of my favorite songs about thankfulness. We are often commanded in Scripture to give thanks. Why is this? Is it because God hovers over us like a doting parent waiting for us to thank Him for each benefit? This cannot be so. The reality is that being thankful helps us to keep our mind and heart in focus. We need to thank the Lord much more than He needs our thanks. In fact, He really does not need our thanks. He is always and forever complete in Himself. We need to thank Him so that we will keep in our minds that our greatest needs are fully met in Him. We need salvation more than warm clothes and He has given us salvation in Christ if we will only receive Jesus as Savior and Lord. We need hope more than food, and He has made it possible for us to rejoice in hope and be patient in our trials. We need Him more than anything or anyone else and He is always only a prayer away.
A thankful heart understands that “If God is for us, who can be against us.” (Romans 8:31) Every one of our many blessings are mounded on top of the ultimate truths of our security in the hands of a loving God. Our minds need to be continually refreshed with this wonderful truth. Giving thanks helps us to do this. An old hymn says it well.
WHEN UPON LIFE’S BILLOWS YOU ARE TEMPEST TOSSED, WHEN YOU ARE DISCOURAGED THINKING ALL IS LOST,
COUNT YOUR MANY BLESSINGS, ANGELS WILL ATTEND,
HELP AND COMFORT GIVE YOU TO YOUR JOURNEY’S END.
COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS. NAME THEM ONE BY ONE. COUNT YOUR MANY BLESSINGS SEE WHAT GOD HATH DONE.