Sunday, January 20, 2013

Future Thankful

Future Thankful
Jan 21, 2013
Hebrews 12:28  "Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe. . ."

In the Bible, the idea of being thankful or having thankfulness in our hearts is usually in response to something.  Either we should be thankful because we have been given something or we should be thankful because we are appreciative of the outcome for a given circumstance.  Thankfulness is therefore the result of a previous action.  I am thankful I have been forgiven of my sins and have received free salvation.  This thankfulness is in response to the forgiveness already poured out upon my life.  It is easy to be thankful in response to a good situation.  We've all experienced a void in our lives at one point or another and when that void was filled we were also filled with thanksgiving.

The Lord is glad when we have thankfulness in our hearts based upon a response to a past situation, but He also wants us to be thankful for what we do not have yet, for what has not yet been given.  He has promised us so much in life, to be received at some point while still on this earth and to be given in eternity.  He wants us to be so excited about the future that we have thankfulness in our hearts about what is still to come.  We need to be thankful for the future; though we don't know what's coming, we do know it will be praiseworthy.

If you do not have thankfulness in your heart on a daily basis, take a look around and heed the instructions given by the writer of the book of Hebrews.  He said that we should be thankful we will be receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken.  Often our world seems to be crumbling apart, tearing at the seams.  Situations look bleak and we walk down darkened paths in life.  You may be headed down a rough road right now, where stability has been removed and the foundation seems shaky.  The Lord would suggest to you to be thankful through it all.  This is counter intuitive to us humans, trying to be thankful while walking down a dark and scary road.  But the Lord said that while looking at the unsure footing, we should be thankful our feet will one day walk around on the solid ground of Heaven, in a kingdom where there is perfection and fullness and peace.  The uncertainty we are experiencing today should give us excitement about tomorrow.

The Lord has good things in store for your life while on this earth and in your distant future, despite moments of discomfort.  Be thankful for that, your future.  If you are not thankful, this can and will cause disrespect in your life toward the Lord by not allowing Him to work as He sees fit.  By coming into agreement with the thankfulness that should be in your heart regarding your future, it will allow you to receive that future.  If you do not have anticipation, then your disgruntled attitude will not result in proper praise toward Him, which might actually lead to the Lord's discipline in your life.  The full verse in Hebrews reads, "Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire."  Notice that if we do not demonstrate thankfulness for the future, and therefore acceptable respect, the Lord is described as a fire ready to consume.  Don't be caught off guard by the Lord's consuming fire of discipline, be thankful now for what the Lord wants to bring about for your life.

Don't take my word for it; look it up:   Lk 7:41-50, Heb 12:18-29

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