Give Thanks In All Circumstances

Discipleship Devotional Study Guide - Gratitude - 1 Thessalonians 5:18- Give Thanks In All Circumstances - Growing As Disciples

Discipleship Devotional Study Guide – Gratitude – 1 Thessalonians 5:18- Give Thanks In All Circumstances – Growing As Disciples

Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.                        Thessalonians 5:18 (NIV)

You Are With Me

This seems like a really hard thing to do. What’s that? I don’t know how I will ever be able to give thanks when bad things happen to me or to the people I love and care about. Is that what you think I want you to do? Do you really think I want you to give thanks for terrible things that happen in life? You don’t? No, that would be really weird, don’t you think? Yes, that’s exactly what I thought. Yes, I know. Let me clear this up for you. I’d like that a lot.

I don’t want you to give thanks for every circumstance that you find yourself in. You will find yourself in some terrible circumstances in life. Yes, I know. You live in a sinful and broken world. Sin has corrupted the world and everything in it. Bad things can and do happen to good people. You know that. Yes, I certainly do. In every circumstance I want you to give thanks to me. You do? Yes, I do.

Why do you think that you can still give thanks to me in the midst of terrible circumstances? I’m not sure. What do you know about terrible circumstances and me? You are with me in the midst of all my circumstances. Yes, I am. I am never alone in the pain that I feel or the loss that I experience. No, you are not. You feel my pain and weep when I weep. Yes, I do.

You are never more near me than when I am feeling broken hearted about something. Yes, that’s true. Some of the closest and most intimate moments I’ve spent with you have been when I’ve been experiencing great pain. I have never left you alone, have I? No, you haven’t. Is that something to rejoice and give thanks about? Yes Lord, it is.

What have I been able to do with terrible circumstances? You have been able to bring about good in my life even when something really terrible has happened. Like what? You have grown my faith and trust in you when I have gone through great difficulties. You have deepened my prayers as I have cried out to you. Aren’t those outcomes worth rejoicing and giving thanks? Yes Lord, they are.

What do you know about this life and terrible circumstances? This life is short. It is like the blink of an eye or a snap of the fingers or even a mist that is here one second and gone the next. Yes, but what do you have to look forward to? I have living forever in heaven with you to look forward to. Has the pain and suffering in this life ever caused you to think more about living forever in heaven with me? Yes, it has. Isn’t that a cause to rejoice and give thanks for even in very difficult circumstances? Yes Lord, it is.

Do you think that you can now rejoice in every circumstance you will face in life? Yes Lord, I know that I can rejoice because you are with me. Yes, I am.

Lord, help me to give thanks in all the difficult circumstances I will face in life. Thank you for drawing near to me when I have been broken hearted. Thank you for bringing about good even when I have felt pain, suffering and loss. Amen

For today’s complete 4 page Discipleship Devotional Study Guide click here:

Gratitude – 1 Thessalonians 5-18 – Give Thanks In All Circumstances – 4 Page Discipleship Devotional Study Guide

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By Jon Ulrich © All rights reserved                                                                     Copying not permitted                                            www.GrowingAsDisciples.com

God’s Will For You

Discipleship Devotional Study Guide - Becoming Like Christ - Day 200 - 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 - God's Will For You - Growing As Disciples

Discipleship Devotional Study Guide – Becoming Like Christ – Day 200 – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 – God’s Will For You – Growing As Disciples

Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NIV)

Circumstances

I know something about circumstances. What’s that? My circumstances will be uncertain. My circumstances will be unpredictable. My circumstances will not always be enjoyable. Does this come as some big surprise to you? No, not really. I know that this is a sin broken world. There is pain and suffering and evil in this world. There are temptations and trials in this life. You experienced the pain and suffering and evil that is in this world. You were not exempt. Why would I be exempt? No, I am certain to experience adverse and difficult circumstances in life. That’s true.

How will you go through circumstances in life? Will you allow your circumstances in life to dictate your thoughts, feelings and values? Who will you rely on as you go through difficult circumstances in life? Will you rely on yourself? Will you rely on me? How will you respond to painful and troubling circumstances in life? Those are all very good questions. There is one thing I know for certain. What’s that? You will be with me to help me as I go through all the circumstances of life. Yes, I will be with you to help you.  I will never be alone. That’s right. It seems to me that trying circumstances will give me focused opportunities to draw near to you. In every difficult and trying circumstance I can draw close to you. You will comfort me. You will strengthen me. You will encourage me. You will carry me through every difficulty. Yes, I will do all these things for you. Receiving your help fills my heart with joy. Experiencing your presence fills my heart with thankfulness. So, even in the midst of trying circumstances, in the midst of great difficulty, I can be joyful and thankful because I know that you will be with me to help me. Yes, I will. In the midst of difficult circumstances, I will know that I will be learning to come to rely on you. I will know that I will be learning to know and do your will because I will remain joyful and thankful as I place all my hope and faith and trust in you. I will keep on being joyful and thankful and prayerful as I walk with you through all the difficult circumstances in life. That will be very good. Thank you, Lord for being with me to help me. 

Lord, I need your help. I want to be joyful and thankful and prayerful throughout all the varied circumstances of life. I want to know and do your will everyday as I love and follow and serve you. You are my joy. For you I give thanks. To you I make my prayers. Amen

For today’s complete 4 page Discipleship Devotional Study Guide click here:

Day 200 – Becoming Like Christ – 1 Thessalonians 5-16-18 – God’s Will For You – 4 Page Discipleship Devotional Study Guide

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By Jon Ulrich © All rights reserved                   Copying not permitted                      www.GrowingAsDisciples.com

God’s Will

Discipleship Devotional Study Guide - Character - 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 - God's WiIl - Growing As Disciples

Discipleship Devotional Study Guide – Character – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 – God’s WiIl – Growing As Disciples

Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NIV)

Stayed Focused

What has your attention? What has your focus? I’m not sure what you mean. What is occupying your thoughts? Can you be a little more specific? Are your thoughts set solely on the things of this life? Is your perspective entirely earthly? You do realize that this life is fleeting? You are just passing through this life. You are here today. You will be gone tomorrow. Your life on this earth will go by like a blink of an eye or a snap of your fingers. Are these thoughts supposed to help me in some way? Am I supposed to be encouraged by these thoughts? I thought that my current circumstances were bad enough. Now, the brevity of my life is getting added on to my dismal circumstances. This does seem like too much weight to bear. Think again.

You are missing the point. This life is like a mist or a vapor that will quickly pass away. You might even say that this life is like a mirage. What you see now seems so real. What is before you will soon disappear. This life is not all that there is. You have so much more to look forward to. You are thinking earthly thoughts from an earthly perspective. You could be thinking heavenly thoughts from a heavenly perspective. Thinking heavenly thoughts would entirely change your perspective. How so? You have eternal life to look forward to. The pain and suffering of this temporary life is nothing compared to the joy and splendor that you will experience forever in heaven. That is a game changer for my thoughts. Yes, it is.

Your future in heaven should also be a game change for your actions. How so? Time is short. There is much work for you to do in this life. The harvest is plentiful. The workers are few. I want you to bear an abundance of fruit for my kingdom. How so? You can go where I send you. You can do what I ask of you. You can be a bright and shining light for me in the world. I can use you to draw others to me. That’s what I want. That is my desire and hope and prayer. I am sure of that. I can see that in you. You will shine brighter and bear more fruit for me if you stay focused and remain joyful, pray continually and give thanks in all circumstances. That, I will do. That will be very good.

Lord, thank you that you have given me so much for which I can be thankful. As I go through difficult circumstances I will keep my heart and mind focused on the life I have with you now and forever. Help me to be joyful, prayerful and thankful as I follow you. Amen

For today’s complete 4 page Discipleship Devotional Study Guide click here:

Character – 1 Thessalonians 5-16-18 – God’s Will – 4 Page Discipleship Study Guide

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By Jon Ulrich © All rights reserved                   Copying not permitted                      www.GrowingAsDisciples.com

Joyful – Prayerful – Thankful

Discipleship Devotional Study Guide - God's Will - 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 - Joyful - Prayerful - Thankful - Growing As Disciples

Discipleship Devotional Study Guide – God’s Will – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 – Joyful – Prayerful – Thankful – Growing As Disciples

Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NIV) 

Circumstances

I have let circumstances get me down. I have not been joyful in every circumstance. Far from it. I have let circumstances cloud my vision and lose my focus. I have let circumstances steal my joy.  I have let circumstances cause me to take my eyes off you. I have let all my thoughts and words and deeds be guided and directed by whatever circumstance I have found myself. Circumstances have caused me to lose my balance and send me off course. So often, I have lived under the circumstances of life rather than above them. That’s not good. No, it’s not. How have gotten back on course? There is one very positive thing about negative circumstances. What’s that? Negative circumstances have always caused me to cry out to you. Right away? No, not right away. I wish I could say that I would start praying to you right away when circumstances have turned negative around me. Unfortunately, I have tried in vain to fight my own way out of negative circumstances. Sometimes, I have even had to reach rock bottom, when all my own efforts have not brought me through negative circumstances, before I have cried out to you in prayer. I like it that you have tried to fight your way out of negative circumstances. Why is that? Your desire to fight and do battle against negative circumstances is good. Your choice of weapon to fight your way out of negative circumstances is all wrong however. How so? You will never win battles against negative circumstances with your own efforts. You must rely on me. You must choose the proper weapon with which to fight. Do you know what that weapon is? Yes, after so many failures, I have finally learned that I can continually pray prayers that will give me victory through circumstances. Why is that? As I pray to you, my eyes will be on you rather than on my circumstances. You will lead me through my circumstances. You will be my helper. You will be my strength. You will be my guide. I can hold on to you as you hold on to me through all the circumstances of life. Yes, you can. Yes, I will. What will you have as I lead you through all the ups and downs and twists and turns of the circumstances of life? I will have joy. Why is that? My relationship with you will grow deeper and become sweeter as I hold on to you and you hold on to me. Yes, it will. Then you will become truly joyful, prayerful and thankful as you love, follow and serve me. Yes, I will.

Lord, I have not always been joyful, prayerful and thankful. I’m sure that comes as no surprise to you. Help me to be continually joyful, prayerful and thankful. I know I have abundant reasons to be joyful, prayerful and thankful. You have blessed my life. Amen

For today’s complete 4 page Discipleship Devotional Study Guide click here:

Gods Will – 1 Thessalonians 5-16-18 – Joyful -Prayerful -Thankful – 4 Page Discipleship Devotional Study Guide

Please consider sharing these devotionals with others through the social media you use.

Individual users may save the Discipleship Devotional Study Guide to their desktop for private use. All the blanks in the study guides are fields that allow typed responses. To use the fields on the study guide you may need to open the guide with a free version of adobe reader.

By Jon Ulrich © All rights reserved                   Copying not permitted                      www.GrowingAsDisciples.com