“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace” (Philippians 4:6-7)
In Philippians 4:6-7 we find one of the most difficult passages in the entire Bible to obey: “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace”.
It’s not easy to stop worrying about the often-scary, everyday parts of our lives, but God tells us how to do it: “Pray about everything. . . . Thank him for all he has done.” Grateful prayer brings peace. God says that when you start to worry, stop to pray.
Parents understand the power of gratitude. Most parents wouldn’t appreciate their children always making requests without saying “thank you” for what they’ve already received. God sees it the same way. He wants us to ask him for what we need and want. More than 20 times in the New Testament, we’re told to “ask” him. But he wants us to ask with gratefulness.
The Bible urges us to be specific in our requests—and our praises. Instead of a simple “thank you for everything,” He wants us to tell him what we’re grateful for. When I say to my wife, “I’m so grateful for you,” she tells me to be specific. She likes to hear what I appreciate about her and what I’m grateful for about her.
God wants to hear the same things. So when you pray, tell God what you’re thankful for. Prayer is one of the most important ways we tell God “thank you.”
When I remember praising God in tough times, these words come to mind :
The “sacrifice of praise” comes from a humble heart that has been purified by fire. It rises from a spirit that has chosen to honor God in spite of the pain that life is causing. Psalm 51:16-17 expresses this idea best when it says, “You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings. My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart you, God, will not despise.”
Thanking God in advance is a big step of faith. The Bible says that when we have the faith to thank God ahead of time for an answer to our prayers, miracles happen. The more thankful we are, the more God works in our lives. The Bible says that God inhabits the praise of his people. He empowers and uses our thanksgiving as an instrument of power in our lives.
* Why is gratitude so important for our spiritual lives?
* Being as specific as possible, what are the reasons you’re thankful to God? Spend some time in prayer, thanking God for those things.
* What are some ways you believe God will bless you in the future? Thank God for those things—even before they happen.
Prayer: Lord, I declare that I shall bless Your name at all times and Your praises shall continually proceed out of my lips. I stand against every Spirit of fear and ingratitude today and embrace the covenant blessings that You have prepared for me. It shall surely end in praise in Jesus name. Amen
(C) Adeyemi Agbelusi