" In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you." 1 Thess.5:18
I have been thinking over and over about this verse in the last week, and have found myself singing "Count your blessings; name them one by one!" as I go about my tasks.
I have so much to be thankful for. There are the happy little circumstances that bring a smile to my day: the fact that our six newly acquired hens, who we were told would come into lay over the next few weeks, have been laying an average of three eggs per day from the day we brought them home! The look of joy on the children's faces every time they discover a newly laid egg! The funny things or endearing things they say. (Such as when my little boy walks into the room, stops in his tracks and says "Mum, you are so beautiful!") There are the ongoing things that are so easy to take for granted: good health, a roof over our heads and meals on the table... I have been consciously "counting" those blessings, and thanking God in my heart for his goodness in all those things.
But above all, I have been counting what a friend sometimes calls "blessings in disguise". I long to become more like Jesus- to be full of love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, self-control... But how would I grow in patience, if I never had to wait? Or how would I become long-suffering if my children were perfect? It isn't hard to be gentle with a sweet, compliant baby- but when he has grown into a stubborn and strong willed three year old I need God's grace to grow in gentleness and goodness! And when I repeatedly give the same instructions to my five-year-old without any response- what an opportunity to excersise self control! I pray daily for wisdom in bringing up my children. How thankful I am that he gives me opportunities to gain it!
May I always walk in the Spirit, so that I truly have cause to be thankful for all God's blessings, and can in truth give thanks in all circumstances!