Keys To Being Thankful In Our Lives
KEYS TO BEING THANKFUL IN OUR LIVES
Colossians 3: 12-17
A man in Phoenix calls his son in New York the day before Thanksgiving and says,"I hate to ruin your day, but I have to tell you that your mother and I are divorcing; forty-five years of misery is enough.
"Pop, what are you talking about?" the son screams. We can't stand the sight of each other any longer," the father says. "We're sick of each other, and I'm sick of talking about this, so you call your sister in Chicago and tell her."
Frantic, the son calls his sister, who explodes on the phone. " they're getting divorced I want stand still for this," she shouts, "I'll take care of this,"
She calls Phoenix immediately, and tells her father, "You are NOT getting divorced. Don't do a single thing until I get there. I'm calling my brother back, and we'll both be there tomorrow. Until then, don't do a thing, DO YOU HEAR ME?" and hangs up.
The old man hangs up his phone and turns to his wife. "Okay," he says, "they're coming for Thanksgiving and paying their own way."
Intro: How do we keep ourselves in the mode of thanksgiving all year long. How do we guard against being ungrateful. When we complain about this or that whether we like to admit it or not its being ungrateful for the blessing God has given us. The last three years we’ve had the opportunity to go to Honduras on Missions and I’d just like to say that every time I go I get a reality thanksgiving check in my life. Have I become ungrateful? I think it is a question we all need to ponder this morning and keep a check on as we travel this sod.
I. PUT ON LOVE (VS.14)---- God’s love in us will keep us truly thankful as we go through life. In this passage Paul calls love the bond of perfection not perfection. The “Bond of perfection means that which holds all the graces together. A person has tremendous grace if they are thankful to God and live that out in their lives
Love is the highest element of divine perfection; “God is love”(I John 4:8) Love creates perfection, but in this verse it is represented as the bond which sustains and supports spiritual perfection. No grace is complete without love. Without the love of God Knowledge is worthless
Love is unselfish---- John 3:16 He willingly gave……. Sin is selfish in all forms and varieties. Such selfishness must be conquered and put down before God can have a right of way in the heart. The greatest need in the church today is an old fashioned revival that will literally baptize believers in, and fill them with , the love of God. When we love God as we should, we will love the brethren and will have a deep concern for those who are out of the ark of safety. We will be eternally thankful for the truth that is in our lives.
A. Love characteristics ( vs.12)
1. Bowel of mercies---tender mercies. The apostle Paul points out certain graces that every true believer should demonstrate in daily living. He first specified the sins that mark the old man—sins manufactured by the old nature and that we are to be different.Rd.vs1 We’re to have tender mercies towards others. Bowels of Tender Mercies depicts a heart that is overflowing toward others that they might not suffer the consequences that they deserve..( ILLUSTRATION A mother once approached Napoleon seeking a pardon for her son. The emperor replied that the young man had committed a certain offense twice and justice demanded death.
"But I don't ask for justice," the mother explained. "I plead for mercy."
"But your son does not deserve mercy," Napoleon replied.
"Sir," the woman cried, "it would not be mercy if he deserved it, and mercy is all I ask for."
"Well, then," the emperor said, "I will have mercy." And he spared the woman's son.
How do tender mercies towards others keep us thankful in our lives? We forget not the mercies God has toward us. The Bible says in Rom 5:8
8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
2. Kindness------We are to demonstrate by action the possession of the new man within us. There should never be a man made organization that out gives, out serves, or out loves the family of God. (tell about YMCA work in Little Rock what lady said)
3. Humbleness of mind-----Christians are not to desire vain glory; believers should never be puffed up. What do we have to be puffed up about? If we had justice we would be in hell! As this love characteristic comes forth in our hearts, we realize that truth that we know is only by His marvelous grace. Instead of setting ourselves up as the judge over others in humility we’re to pray for that person and know that God’s word will judge one day and it will be perfect……………
4. Meekness----What is meekness? Webster defines it as this: enduring injury with patience and without resentment.
B. Loves’ Manifestations
1. Bearing one another------We’re to bear up one another in prayer and supplication. We’re to bear on another’s burdens. When we’re going through tough times as the church we’re to be the family of God. The Church as a body was elected before the foundation of the world, and every true believer is predestined to be conformed to the image of God’s dear Son:These graces should displayed by the elect of God, holy and beloved for the world to see
2. Forgiving one another----we’re to forgive one another because he has forgiven us. We are to forgive fully and freely and we are to forgive at once…. We are not to hold malice nor bear a grudge.. As believers and followers of Jesus Christ we should be strong enough and big enough to forgive without demanding apology on the part of those who have offended us. It may be painful, it may take an extra portion of grace---but Christians should forgive and forget, remembering God has forgiven us. ( Jesus hanging on the cross said , “Father forgive them……
II. PUT IN GOD’S WORD(vs16)
A. Manifestations of this change
1. Wisdom------Jesus said in John 6:53, “Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man , and drink His blood, ye have no life in you.” What he was saying is simply this; “ unless you accept my word literally, literally appropriate it into your heart and take it into the inner man, you have no life; because it is the Word that brings life!” A person that is excited about what he or she has learned from His word has wisdom……
2. Teaching and admonishing------we will desire to see others receive Christ and take their walk with Him to new heights. No person can teach , preach or instruct another in the things of God unless he is himself literally saturated with the Word of God. When we put on the word of God it will flow from us. We just can’t wait to share with others what God has shared with us. Isn’t great to know that when we humble ourselves and pray to our heavenly Father to give us our daily bread, he is always there to give us abundantly more that we ask. Amen?
3. Singing with Grace------ singing with thanksgiving. Friends you cannot sing unto God and please Him without singing with Grace. When we put in God’s word, a natural response and overflow of that is singing… (tell about Franklin Grahm crusade and sitting by deaf section singing, “Lord I lift your name on high) Keys to being thankful; 1.Put on love….2. Put in God’s word . And e3
III. PUT UP HIS GLORY IN OUR LIVES(VS 17)
A. How do we put up His Glory in our lives? I’ve had people ask me, “Bro. David as a Christian can we do this or participate in that? How do we know what we can do and what we should not do in our lives? Rd. vs. The answer is, If we can do it in the name of the Lord Jesus and thank God for it than we can proceed. “In the name of” refers to all that Jesus stood for, all He taught. All our actions all our language should be guided by this one central theme. We’re to do it In the name of the Lord Jesus. Christ. WE let our ambitions become His ambitions and we put up His glory in our lives.
Why is it important that we be thankful and live in thanksgiving at all times in our lives? Because it demonstrates the Supremacy of Jesus Christ in our lives and that He is the source of all blessings.
Question; Are you truly thankful toward God or do you find yourself oftentimes meandering at the pool of complaining. You cannot complain and be thankful at the same time…………(tell about Honduras lady’s thankfulness over a door)