“Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.”
1 Thessalonians 5:16-17
If you’re like me, at one point in your life, you’ve probably tried to get into shape. You research different kinds of workout programs and meals plans to find the perfect one for you. You watch the interviews of people who have successfully toned, sculpted and transformed their bodies. You tell yourself that you can do this and look forward to the end result.
But what happens if you only do part of the program? If you ignore the meal plans, or only workout out 2 days a week versus the 6 days that are recommended, will your body get the results that are promised in the program? Probably not.
Our walk with God is kind of like that too. We so often search for God’s will in our life. We read all the books. (Just for fun, I went to christianbooks.com and typed in “God’s will” in the search bar and got 14,815 results.)
Like physical fitness, searching for spiritual fitness is something sought after and researched. But as I studied the verses from 1 Thessalonians that are quoted above, something stood out to me. This verse tells us what God’s will is for all followers of Christ. It is to be joyful, never stop praying and be thankful in all circumstances.
But like physical fitness, we want to shortcuts. We want to skip steps and get the same end results. We are thankful in most circumstances, joyful sometimes (if our kids are being good and the sun is shining), but only pray in front of others. Yet, we get so frustrated when God doesn’t seem to be moving in our life the way we expect.
Doesn’t that give you a fresh perspective on being thankful, prayerful and joyful? It does for me. As much as I enjoy books and studies on learning and following God’s will for my life, I’m going to get back to the basics and make the following the theme for my days: “Erin, always be joyful. Erin, never stop praying. Erin, be thankful in all circumstances. Erin, this is God’s will for you. Erin belongs to Christ Jesus.” Thanks to Melissa Taylor from Proverbs 31 ministries online bible studies for issuing this challenge 🙂