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And Be Thankful

Dear Redeeming Grace,

As we have gathered with friends, family or loved ones yesterday, thanksgiving may still be lingering in our minds. This morning my mind was drawn to Paul's words in Col. 3:

"And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful." (Col 3:15 ESV)

I love the simplicity of those last 3 words. And be thankful. They come at the end of a long list of things Paul is encouraging his readers to "put on". Things like compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience.

So what strikes me today is that giving thanks is simply the fruit of being a thankful person. One seems easier than the other. I can have a moment of thanking someone, but I'm in need of grace to be a thankful person. It's something I think we each long for the Lord to work in us.

The word "thankful" itself contains "charis" the word we also translate into gift and grace. And as I reflect on thankfulness today, it seems fitting that to be thankful simply means to be one who is aware of, and affected by, God's lavish mercy.

I believe the more we savor the goodness of God to us in Christ, the more our hearts will reflect Paul's command here to be thankful. I pray and trust that the knowledge of God's love for you in Christ will fill your heart with thankfulness and overflow in thanksgiving.