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Magazine > Content

A Tough Command

Read | 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Some verses—like today’s—are easier to memorize than practice. Giving thanks is easy, but giving thanks in everything is a nearly impossible task. And gratitude at times even seems inappropriate, considering the depth of pain or turmoil we are experiencing. But we have a Comforter who helps us exercise thankfulness in every situation.

The Holy Spirit enables believers to do what God requires, and teaching us a gratitude habit is part of His work. Psalm 92 teaches that since “it is good to give thanks to the Lord,” we should “declare [His] lovingkindness in the morning and . . . faithfulness by night” (vv. 1-2). In other words, we should regularly anticipate and recall His provision. But when believers awaken to painful circumstances that have no logical reason for thankfulness, our Comforter provides the motivation and words.

Expressing thanks during turmoil takes place neither spontaneously nor apart from another spiritual activity—prayer. Today’s passage links the disciplines of rejoicing, prayer, and thanksgiving: both exultation and gratitude hinge upon regular communication with God. A prayerless man cannot remain thankful for long, because he is too overwhelmed by his problems. Talking with God forces problems to recede so they can be replaced by peace.

Why does the Lord command us to exercise gratitude? Because He knows that when we focus on His work in our life, we’ll discover our spirits lifting and courage strengthening. Then as we watch Him intervene, we rejoice more, pray more fervently, and learn to give thanks in everything.

Copyright 2015 In Touch Ministries, Inc. All rights reserved. In Touch grants permission to print for personal use only.

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  • February 26, 2013 08:05 AM


    I failed at this task miserably yesterday.Thank God for his grace and kindness.
  • February 25, 2013 11:18 AM


    very inspiring
  • February 25, 2013 12:33 AM


    Return to me the joy of your salvation, and grant me a willing spirit to sustain me. (Psalm 51:12) Oh thank you God for your many blessings, and for showing me the truth over and over again. Thank you Intouch for sharing Gods word and peace with us!
  • February 24, 2013 01:31 PM


    Thank you Lord!
  • February 24, 2013 10:19 AM


    I am SO Thankful to God for Dr. Stanley and his ministry.
  • February 23, 2013 09:09 PM


    I love the beautiful truths Dr. Stanley shares with us. Once I complete my devotion and/or magazine article I pass it on daily over Twitter, YouVersion as well as any who may be in need. I am grateful for Pastor Stanley and all who make In Touch possible. Thank you andmay God continue to bless you as you bless us through your love, wisdom and commitment in/of Gods Word.
    In much gratitude,
    Terri L.C.
  • February 23, 2013 10:54 AM


    Learn to give thanks in ALL things!!!!

  • February 23, 2013 10:32 AM


    Jesus is the balm of Gilead when you've been walking through the fire...
  • February 23, 2013 10:23 AM


    God always gives us what we need and when I read this today it was as if it was written with me in mind. Thank you! Always I find something at Intouch that lifts and encourages me.
  • February 23, 2013 10:15 AM


    Thank iyou Lord Jesus for everything. My day is not complete without saying thank you. Thank you for the good things in my life as well as for the not so good things because I know that there are lessons learn in every mistake and weaknesses. I love you, my Lord Jesus.
  • February 23, 2013 10:14 AM

    by verything we do..gve thanks..gvng thnks during the trying times makes us and keeps us focused on Whio is in total conntrol of everything....Praise God!
  • February 23, 2013 09:23 AM


    Thanks! Perfect for my families situation.
    God knows what we need, and I needed this!
  • February 23, 2013 09:09 AM


    thk u for sharing The Word.
  • February 23, 2013 07:53 AM


    ThankGod for the scriptures because what I am going
    Through now I could hardly give thanks to God
  • February 23, 2013 07:43 AM


    Thank you Lord
  • February 23, 2013 07:13 AM


    Thanks!! ;-)
  • February 23, 2013 07:00 AM


    Gods word is so good. It's always exactly what I need at all times. Thank You Father!

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