Can You, Should You Be Thankful for That?
Christians sometimes quote 1 Thessalonians 5:18, In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. They may emphasize “In every thing…” and say that we don’t have to give thanks for everything. Yet the Spirit of God clearly tells us through Paul in another place that we should be thankful for all things.
Ephesians 5:20 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;
A friend of mine was posting a “31 days of gratitude challenge” in October on Facebook. One of her questions was “What pain are you grateful for?” I had to honestly answer that I couldn’t say that I was thankful for my anxiety disorder, but that it has taught me some important lessons for which I’m thankful. I also haven’t learned to be thankful for migraines, although I am thankful for the sympathy I’ve learned for others through them. But, this shows my limitations, not that it is impossible to give always thanks for all things. I should be thankful for that pain, despite its hardship. Anything that pushes us closer to Jesus Christ and causes us to cast ourselves more wholly upon Him is something to be thankful for, unpleasant as that seems. Like contentment, it is something that we generally have to learn.