Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Colossians 3:15-17
Have you ever been in a situation where you felt like you should be thankful, but the feeling just wasn't there? How about when you were doing all you could do for others, but you did it out of obligation, not out of a heart of gratitude?
Paul was pretty specific in these verses about how we need to not only be thankful and have a heart of gratitude but also to make it a practice of giving thanks to God in all we do and say. Wow - that's a pretty tall order to always give with an attitude of thankfulness!
About a month ago as I was planning our annual H*VMI Family Retreat, some ideas were not coming together the way I thought they should. After all, the retreat is a huge responsibility of service to our staff and board and I wanted everything to coordinate together with every detail in place. It sounded like a worthy goal, but one thing was missing - I was trying to do things in my own strength and my heart was anything but grateful for what lay ahead as I organized the retreat! I was heading down a path of just completing a responsibility for the sake of doing it. Where was my attitude of gratitude?
A friend challenged me about what was really happening in my heart and I soon confessed it to my Savior and immediately, received peace in my heart as I thanked Him for the opportunity to serve. Since then, the details have emerged. I have a very thankful heart for not only the peace that is there but also for the opportunity to serve my co-workers. I am excited to see what God will accomplish this weekend for His glory!
What is going on in your heart today as you think about what God has given you to do for Him? Are you grateful for the opportunity to serve others? Remember to give thankfully because it not only will change your heart attitude but also honor our Heavenly Father!