In the book of Colossians, Paul is giving instruction to the people in the church of Colossae on how to live the Christian life. In chapter 3, verses 12 – 14 he tells them that as Christians we should live as if we were chosen by God, because we are, we should try to live holy lives and be compassionate and kind. We should be humble and have patience and forgive each other and above all we should love each other.
Then we go into our study passage. And if we do our best to live that way then we can….
“And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.” Colossians 3:15
I noticed that Paul actually puts great emphasis in this verse and the next couple of verses to being thankful. As we are letting the peace of Christ rule in our hearts we will be thankful. As we are doing our best to live for Him, we will cultivate gratitude.
I love the next verse which directs us to let the word of Christ dwell in you richly.
“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.” Colossians 3:16
I love God’s word. I prayed years ago for God to cultivate a love for His word in my heart and He has. I love studying and trying to discern what is meant behind the passages. I can remember as a young woman, reading and not really grasping much of what I was reading. I am grateful for what I have learned. Not that I know much by any means! And I am grateful for what He teaches me as I study now. I love writing about what he is teaching me. And I love singing psalms and hymns. I want to remind myself to do so with thankfulness because of this verse!
My struggle comes with the next verse.
“And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Colossians 3:15-17
Oh I love the verse, I just wonder how many times am I guilty of not doing my every day, mundane tasks with thankfulness in my heart. I confess it here, I am not much of a Martha. I cook and clean because someone’s got to do it. I wish I were one of those people who love doing those things but I really am just not. And I am afraid that when I do those things I don’t do them with a very thankful heart. I pray that God will remind me to do my every day tasks, even the ones that I am not particularly looking forward to or enjoying with a thankful heart for what He has given me.
Why do you think Paul put so much emphasis on being thankful? I think it is because when we live from a grateful heart and we count even the mundane things, such as work as blessings, we are living a more peaceful life. That’s why the first directive is “And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts.” When we live for Him the best we know how and when we forgive each other and love each other and count our blessings instead of looking at what we don’t have, we are a happier people.
A couple of years ago I was at a conference and there was a breakout session with a speaker who told us, when you have things before you that you have to do to change your way of speaking them. Instead of saying I have to _____, you name it, whether it be “go to work today,” “clean my house today,” or “go to the store,” whatever it is, change it to “I get to _____.” It truly does change your whole outlook.
So today, I get to go to my job and for that I am thankful! I am blessed to get to go to work to a job I enjoy with a group of people I truly enjoy being around!