I Thessalonians 5:18: “In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” I can give thanks…
In infirmities — because His grace is sufficient, His strength is made perfect in my weakness. II Corinthians 12:9-10.
In reproaches — because it is an opportunity to see a fault I may have been unaware of and to deal with it, or if it is due to His Name, because it is a sign I belong to Him (Matthew 5:10-12) and not a part of the world system that opposes Him; I am a partaker of His sufferings (Philippians 3:9-10)
In necessities — because it is an opportunity to learn to be content in every circumstance (Philippians 4:11-13), and to see His provision (Philippians 4:19), and for Him to receive glory in the answer (II Corinthians 4:15)
In distresses — because it is an opportunity to find out my limits and my need and to see His provision and deliverance.
This blessed life of victory is only possible to those who have been born from above. By nature we were born from below into the first Adam, who was “a living soul.” We must be born from above, into the second Adam, who becomes to all who trust in Him a Life-giving spirit (1Co 15:45). That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and cannot of itself rise into the Spirit; the Holy Spirit must stoop to lift it into union with Himself. But He will do this for you, if only you will lift your heart to Christ in simple faith and surrender.
The difference it will make! Each life has been planned by God with the intention of training it for high service here and beyond; and whatever happens in life, there is always an abundance of grace awaiting our use. But how often we are as blind to it as Balaam was to the Angel that stood on the wayside! We make our plans! We lie awake half the night in a fever of anxiety! We go to this friend or that! But we do not claim that abundance of grace which is intended to meet the need of the hour. It is only as we receive it by a childlike faith that we can reign in life. That word “abundance” in its Latin original speaks of ocean-waves. Stand on the shore and look out on that infinite expanse, and do not be content with scooping up enough to fill an oyster-shell!
What will result? A royal life! If a throne means power–we are strengthened with might by His Spirit in the inner man. If it means victory–we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us. If it means largess–we have always all sufficiency in all things, and abound to every good work.
Heavenly Father, I thank Thee for the trials and pains that are ever working for my good, and making me a partaker of Thy holiness. May I receive the abundance of Thy grace, and reign in life here and hereafter. AMEN.
So when any kind of need or problem arises, I can stress over it, wail “Why me?”, wring my hands, worry — or I can acknowledge my own deficiencies and rest in childlike faith in my heavenly Father, knowing He can take care of any need, physical, financial, emotional, spiritual, and joyfully watch to see what He will do, thankful for the opportunity to once again turn my eyes away from myself and to Him and His greatness, power, and majesty.
And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong. II Corinthians 12:9-10.
Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7.
My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. James 1:2-4.
Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us. Romans 1:1-5.