Contentment is rooted in thanksgiving. At least 59 times the Scripture commands us to “give thanks” to the Lord. 1 Chronicles 16:34 states, “Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!” Psalms 136:1-3 admonishes us to “Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever. Give thanks to the God of gods, for his steadfast love endures forever. Give thanks to the Lord of lords, for his steadfast love endures forever.”
The common theme in these Scriptures is the reason for our thanks. We are to be thankful because God loves us with an eternal love. We have been embraced with a forever love. No matter the circumstance, situation, issue, or problem, we are confident that God’s steadfast love endures.
God’s love not only endures but it is forever available to us. Thus, the Apostle Paul can write in Phil. 4:4-7, “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
We are commanded to give thanks because a thankful heart is within our reach. We live in God’s eternal provision of love. Because nothing can separate us from God’s love, we are confident that no situation can prevent us from experiencing God’s love. With this in mind, we face every conflict with a thankful heart.
I don’t have to be anxious about anything, because literally nothing can thwart God’s eternal love from reaching me. God is accessible in every circumstance and situation.
Giving thanks to God is more than just recounting the good God has done in our life. Rather, thanks giving is the daily overflow of a life rooted in the things of God. The Holy Spirit reveals the Father’s love for us on a daily basis. Consequently, we enter into our prayers with a thankful heart.
The secret to a contented life is not having one’s prayers answered, but rather learning how to access the life we’ve already been given in Christ. God is already eternally loving us. Nothing is going to separate us from that love. We will face trials, conflicts, even death; but the victory has already been won. Life is not a continual striving for joy, peace, and contentment. Instead, we simply learn how to live in the gift we have already received.
This doesn’t mean that we lack struggle, it just means the answer to our struggles is in the room. God is the God of the eternal now. In the midst of our confusion, sorrow, and pain, he can be found. In every circumstance, God can be found in the room! I am thankful that God is with me. My prayer life continually yields to this reality. Christian maturity is really the process of learning how to abide with our eternally present saviour.
He is our peace! He is our reward! He is our love! He is eternally with us! We are not alone! Therefore, I am eternally thankful. Praise God.