The Christian message we often hear is how much God loves us and how He came to die to pay the price for our sins. All that is true, but the outcome of our faith should reflect a desire to walk with Him and become more like Him in the way we live and love one another. God never promised that life would be easy, but when we have genuine faith, we begin to understand that Jesus is all we need, and for that, we should live with thankful hearts. He is our strength and our hope. Therefore, God expects us to have a thankful heart as a way of thanking God for His love and care for all He has created.
“Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!” 1 Chronicles 16:34
“For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word  of God and prayer” (1 Timothy 4:4-5)
Jesus commands all believers to love as He loves, with all our heart, mind, soul and strength. God’s love for us is perfect, while human love is imperfect, selfish, and often fleeting. God defines love by is own nature. He is love. He is always good. Therefore, all good things come from God and not from us. Often times, especially when things are going well, we tend to pat ourselves on the back and continue in our own pride to take the glory for the things done well. What we often forget is that if something is done well, it is God working through us who did it. This is why God’s desire for us to be thankful for all things in life is to remind us that He is the one to be praised, not us! All that we have that is good is from God. He gave us life, and He suffered and died for our sins to give us eternal life with Him. Our response to His goodness, grace, mercy, and love has to be worshiping, praising, and thanking God.
“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change” (James 1:17).
“Praise the Lord! Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever! (Psalm 106:1)
.”Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18).
The most significant issue that keeps humans from having a relationship with God is our pride and arrogance in thinking God owes us happiness and continued good health. We are to be thankful for all things because we know that God is in complete control. Therefore, our response to God should be grateful in all situations. Our sinful nature would love for us to take credit for all that works and blame God when life gets hard. We are to give thanks always, no matter what the circumstance. God knows it is good for us to give thanks.
“In everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thessalonians 5:18).
“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” (Philippians 4:4–7).
Giving thanks in all circumstances is a choice we have to make. When life crashes in on us, our natural response might be to become bitter or to distance ourselves from our Savior. We can’t walk in fellowship with God with anger or bitterness in our hearts.
In all situations, we should thank God for being with us, comforting us, and loving us through any circumstance we are experiencing.
“Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him” (James 1:12).
“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me” (2 Corinthians 12:9).
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good,8 for those who are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28).
Through the gift of the Holy Spirit, God in us, we can hurt, grieve and suffer with a thankful heart. The scriptures are filled with verses of encouragement that comfort our souls.
“Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us” (Romans 5:3–5).
“Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing” (James 1:2–4).