Friday, November 22, 2019

A SONG IN THE NIGHT

Behold, bless the LORD, All you servants of the LORD,
Who by night stand in the house of the LORD!
Lift up your hands in the sanctuary, And bless the LORD.
The LORD who made heaven and earth Bless you from Zion!
Psalm 134:1-3 (NKJV)




It is a strange time for adoration to stand in God's house by night, to worship in the depth of sorrow. It is indeed an arduous thing. Yes, and therein lies the blessing; it is the test of perfect faith. In the Bible, night often represents times of trials, testings, tribulations, persecutions ... In our modern days we would easily identify some of these"nights" as times of disappointments when friends fail us, unanswered prayers, sicknesses, lost of jobs, depressions or even bereavements ...

The Psalmist in Psalm 77:6 said
 "I Call To Remembrance My Song In The Night." 

A song in the night is always a song of faith. That is why the Bible stresses that God is a God who gives songs in the night. Songs are therapy and are like vitamins that lift the soul and give it courage to make it through the night. In Psalm 42 where there is a struggle with depression the Psalmist says in verse 8, "By day the Lord directs His love; at night His song is with me." In Job 35:1 we read of God as One "Who gives songs in the night."

Did you know that the only record that Jesus ever sing is in Matthew 26:30 and it was at night in a very stressful situation. Jesus is about to earn His title as the Man of sorrows acquainted with grief. He was heading for the worst and the last night of His life before the cross. The agony of Gethsemane, the anguish of His betrayal, arrest, and illegal condemnation was His agenda for the night, and He knew it. Yet He joins His disciples in a song. A heart filled with song is better prepared to face sorrow. The thing we need to see here is that Jesus lived as a real life on our level. Real life is like that, and Jesus is singing with His disciples now, and in a matter of minutes he will be facing the cross! The other record about people singing in the New Testament is Paul and Silas in Acts 16:25. We read, "About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God." They were in the Philippian's jail and fastened in stocks. Not the best position for singing, nor the best atmosphere, but there they were praising God in song!

As Lifestyle Worshipers there are times we will walk through the "desert places" or "valley of the shadow of death". These are times God will give us a song in the night but we must make a choice to sing - to offer Sacrifice of Praise. A song in the night is always a song of faith that night is sure to give way to the light.
Personally the Lord has given me songs in the night like "As A Deer"- Martin Nystrom, "Blessed Be The Name Of The Lord" - Matt Redman ... and many more ... these songs are now more than my favourite songs, nice lyrics or good feels but they are songs that have become personally mine given by the Holy Spirit that have come out of the fiery trials!

Are you in the "fiery furnace" or in the "Lions' den" or in "the valley of the shadow of death"? Let's join the Levites (worshipers) in Psalm 134:1-3 to sing:

Behold, bless the LORD, All you servants of the LORD,
Who by night stand in the house of the LORD!
Lift up your hands in the sanctuary, And bless the LORD.
The LORD who made heaven and earth Bless you from Zion!

Have A Blessed & Victorious Week! - TPWC

Thursday, October 31, 2019

GREAT IS THE LORD & MOST WORTHY OF PRAISE




GREAT IS THE LORD
AND MOST WORTHY OF PRAISE
1 Chronicles 16:25
 
God is not just WORTHY of praise, He is MOST WORTHY of praise. In other words, whatever praise we can give Him, He deserves it. We cannot overestimate His worth because He is worth more than anything.

Think of how that applies to our lives. We might wonder if it's worth giving up possession or a habit for Him, but if He's worth more than anything, the answer is clear. We might consider giving up our career or our ambitions for Him, and we wonder if it will be a worthwhile gift. But if He's worth more than we can imagine, it is. We may wonder if our praise, worship, and sacrifice will be worth the payoff to us, but we're asking the wrong question. Whether it's worth it to us is not the point; He's worthy of it. That's all that matters.

There is no greater investment than God. Whatever we can give to Him, pour out of our hearts to Him, lay down before Him, and do for Him, it's a profoundly worthwhile offering because it is directed toward a profoundly WORTHY GOD. No gift is lost on Him. No sacrifice for Him is ever considered unimportant in His eyes.

Consider what you have to offer Him. Your obedience? It is never about earning His favour; it's about offering your best. Your purity? It isn't because He's a Joy-Giver but because He wants you for Himself - and He deserves you. Your possessions? They are meaningless trinkets in His eyes, and He wishes you could loose your grip on them. Your time? You have an eternity before you; there's no need to spend time on yourself. Your talents? He gave them to you so that you could worship Him in ways no one else can. Your relationships? The God of relationships wants to demonstrate His peace and His love in them.




What are you holding on to? Lay it down. Give it to Him. It's right to do so. He's worthy of whatever you have.
(Extract from - Worship The King by Chris Tiegreen)
 "Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!" - Revelation 5:12

Monday, September 23, 2019

PRAISE REVOLUTION - CHOICE

I Will Bless The Lord At All Times
His Praise Shall Always Be In My Mouth
Psalm 34:1
CHOICEEveryone of them, in a sense is a test. Why? Because they reveal our desires. As worshipers, our choices have profound spiritual results: often our taste for obedience is exposed and our deepest loves come to the surface in the choices we make.
What would happen if we decided to let every thought and every breath BLESS GOD? Imagine the result if His name were affectionately on our lips as we lay down at night, as we turned over in our sleep, as we awoke in the morning and as we went about our daily business. Would such a perspective radically change our hearts? Probably. Would it change our world? It's likely. Anytime (both good or bad times) in the Bible someone gives himself to WORSHIP, God does amazing things through that person. BLESSINGS abound. God's work is done. He is honored.

What prevents us from such a pervasive sense of His worth? Are our schedules just too busy? Or is it deeper than that? Perhaps it's a suspicion that He hasn't been as good to us as SCRIPTURE declares that He is. Or maybe it's a subtle resentment that He has not paved our path with gold and has allowed us to taste the bitter trials of life.

Whatever reasons we can come up with, we should ask ourselves if a WORSHIP-FILLED HEART is worth sacrificing to the gods of busyness, apathy, and dissapointmnet. If we really got a glimpse of God, we would never be too busy, we would never be too apathetic; and we would never be dissapointed with His will for us. We would understand that underlying everything we go through and everything responsibility we're given is the LOVING HAND OF GOD who is leading us closer to Him. The end result is a greater blessing than any earthbound human can possibly imagine.

WHAT WERE KING DAVID'S REASONS FOR MAKING HIS CHOICE TO BLESS THE LORD AT ALL TIMES?
May the reading of Psalm 34 enlightens us:
1) He will deliver us from fear (Psalm 34:4)
2) He will save us out of our troubles (Psalm 34:6)
3) He will guard and deliver us (Psalm 34:9)
4) He will listen when we talk to Him (Psaml 34:15)
5) He will redeem us (Psalm 34:22)
But we must do our part. we can appropriate His blessings when we:
6) Seek Him (Psalm 34:4 & 10)
7) Cry out to Him (Psalm 34:6 & 17)
8) Trust Him (Psalm 34;8)
9) Fear Him (Psalm 34:7 & 9)
10) Refrain from lying (Psalm 34:13)
11) Turn from evil to do good and seek peace (Psalm 34:14)
12) Serve Him (Psalm 34:22)

We usually find it easy to PRAISE God in good times, when everything seems to be going our ways, but hard to boast in the Lord when our circumstances are difficult.We can see in king David's life as a passionate WORSHIPER is not always smooth ... in context, Psalm 34 reveals that king David was prepared to PRAISE God even when he was in fear for his life, had gone down to Gath where he had been forced to play the part of a madman (1 Samuel 21:10-15). Therefore, Psalm 34 was king David's testimony of God's goodness inviting others to BLESS, to BOAST, to MAGNIFY, to EXTOL and to EXALT THE LORD .... AT ALL TIMES!


Let us revolutionize our PRAISE. Make that CHOICE to BLESS the LORD AT ALL TIMES!

Sunday, August 25, 2019

THE SPIRIT OF THANKSGIVING (PART 8) - BE ANXIOUS FOR NOTHING (II)


Beware Of Anxiety. Next To Sin,
There Is Nothing That So Troubles
Our Mind, Strains The Heart,
Distresses The Soul,
And Confuse The Judgement
- William Ullathorne

As worshipers, what will cripple us from doing God’s will and enjoying His presence? What will rob us of the joy of the LordANXIETY! ANXIETY! ANXIETY!
Why is Paul so concerned with our level of anxiety? Because :
1) Proverbs 12:25 tells us that “An anxious heart weighs a man down.”
2) Isaiah 61:3 equate this as "the spirit of heaviness"
3) Psalm 139:23 - "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughtsSee if there is any offensive way in me and lead me in the way everlasting." It's a little disturbing to us that king David equates anxious thoughts with an "offensive way" (verse 24) in this Psalm.



In what way can our anxiety be awfully offensive?
- When we harbour anxious thoughts, we are saying that the One who has promised to take care of our future (Jeremiah 29:11) might not do a good job of it.
- It says that the One who has promised to walk us through the waters and not allow the fire to burn us (Isaiah 43:2) might abandon us to the waters and the fire.
- And it says that His presence in the valley of the shadow of death (Psalm 23:4) might not be enough to calm us
(an extract from Worship The King & Walk With God Devotional by Chris Tiegreen)

What is the solution to our anxiety? We learned from last week's post that the answers are found in Philippians 4:6-7. That we “Do not be anxious about anything, but in EVERYTHING by prayer and petition, with THANKSGIVING, present your requests to God. And the PEACE of God, which transcends ALL understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Jesus Christ.” When our prayers and petitions are mingled with THANKSGIVING, we are opening our hearts (guarding your hearts - Proverbs 4:23) to His presence. Psalm 100:4 says “Enter His gates (opening your heart) with THANKSGIVING and His courts with PRAISE; give THANKS to Him and PRAISE His name.” Instead of occupying our thoughts with the spirit of anxiety, we “PUT ON THE GARMENT OF PRAISE for the spirit of heaviness (heavy, burdened, failing spirit)” - Isaiah 61:3

Jesus taught us, " ... do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of it's own." - verse 34 (Matthew 6: 25-34 in context)
Imagine a son lying awake at night wondering if his parents are going to feed him tomorrow. Or a daughter wondering if she will have something to clothe herself in. That might happen in some homes, but what does it say of the parents? Nothing complimentary.

As worshipers of God we cannot praise Him with such insecurities. Our anxieties are forms ofanti-worship - a clear declaration that our God might not have promised us enough or might not be able to follow through on what He has promised. Yes, He may let us go through hard things, but never ourside of His timing or beyond His protection. So worship Him. And don't worry about tomorrow!
Mega-Blessings \0/\0/\0/ 
TPWC

Friday, July 19, 2019

THE SPIRIT OF THANKSGIVING (PART 7) - BE ANXIOUS FOR NOTHING (I)


PHILIPPIANS 4:6-7
Pray, Give Thanks And Let God Worry - Martin Luther
Philippians 4:6 is one of the most straightforward commands in Scripture, but one of the hardest to fulfill. Yet if we believe in the inspiration of Scripture, the originator of this verse is none other than the Holy Spirit.
How can God expect us to be anxiety free? He must have a reason. He wouldn’t tell us to do something that’s impossible to do. No, the rationale for this imperative comes in the words that follow. The reason we can be anxious for nothing is that our prayers, petitions, and requests can be given over to God in the spirit of GRATITUDE. Prayer with thanksgiving gives us rock-solid assurance that our anxieties are unfounded.


It is possible for a worshiper who is practicing the presence of God daily to be able to manage all his fears, anxieties and stresses. How is this possible? The answer is found in the presence of God. When you are in the presence of God, there is JOY and “The Joy of the Lord is your strength”! That is why Paul is able to give us a command in Philippians 4:4 to “REJOICE in the Lord always. I will say it again: REJOICE!” In fact a worshiper who is practicing the presence of God will be able to stay calmed in any situations because “the Lord is near” (Philippians 4:5). And the result is having "the peace of God" (Philippians 4:7) in midst of all circumstances.


Can I challenge you further on the spirit of thankfulness, gratitude and rejoicing?


1) Colossians 3:15-17"And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him."Be thankful - that is not a suggestion; it is a command. In all that we do we need to be guided by two principles: doing it "in the name of the Lord Jesus" and "giving thanks to God through Him"


2) Ephesians 5:19
"... speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ."When you are full of the Holy Spirit you will continually give God thanks. In fact, you can measure the fullness of the Spirit within you partly by the spirit of a thankful heart. When you cease to do so, it is one sure indication you are beginning to leak out


3) 1 Thessalonians 5:18
"... in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."What is the will of God in Christ Jesus? To give thanks in everything. So if you are not giving thanks, as we have already seen, you are actually out of the will of God.


GRATITUDE is an attitude that if it isn't flowing naturally now, should be cultivated zealously. Practice it often, and it will soon become as natural as breathing.

Have a joyous and victorious week!
TPWC

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

THE SPIRIT OF THANKSGIVING (PART 6) - PURE JOY

Consider It Pure Joy, My Brother,
Whenever You Face Trials Of Many Kinds
James 1:2
We have been talking about being "Anxious For Nothing" in our last three posts. We also challenged you that we can indeed overcome the spirit of anxieties, worries and stresses by choosing to release the spirit of joy, rejoicing and thanksgiving. But what if we are in the midst of trials and testings? For most of us to consider these situations a matter of joy is another issue altogether.

As worshipers, how can we consider the trials of life pure joy? Only those who see the surprising benefit in them. Through the lens of Scripture, we can see that benefit. We are told that our trials develop our character in ways that would produce eternal profit for us; and we are told that the God who allows them always has our welfare in mind. These are things that unbelieving world cannot see, but they have been revealed to those who will believe.

There many examples in the Bible of believers practicing this "irrational act of joy" in the midst of trials:

1) Acts 5:41 - the apostles who were arrested for preaching Jesus left the court of the Sanhedrin "rejoicing because they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name".

2) Acts 16:25 - Paul and Silas sang praises to God from the depths of a filthy Philippian prison

3) 2 Corinthians 8:2 - Paul praised the Macedonian churches for their generosity in giving while in the midst of "severe trials, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty ..."

4) 2 Corinthians 12:10 - Paul delights in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties.

5) James 1:2 - James points to the benefit our trials have for our own character.

6) Jesus tells us in Matthew 5:11 that we are blessed "when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me". In fact Jesus also tells us to "rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven ..." (Matthew 5:12)

Are you going through difficult times? Don't despair. Discouragement and depression are not the Biblical responses, only the natural ones. But we live above the natural. We know the end result of our pain. Perseverence results in maturity, and problems give Jesus a stage to show His resurrection power (Philippians 3:10). There is no greater blessing than that. 
Make a choice: Consider It Pure Joy!
#Pure Joy #Count It All Joy #The Joy of the Lord #Rejoice In The Lord
(an extract from: Walk With God Devotional by Chris Tiegreen)

Sunday, May 12, 2019

THE SPIRIT OF THANKSGIVING (PART 5) - THANKSGIVING LAYS THE FOUNDATION FOR PRAISE & WORSHIP





Thanksgiving 

Lays the Foundation for Praise and Worship. 

1) The Source Of Thanksgiving Is Grace
Thanks is our reaction when we realize that all we have, receive, and are is a gift of God's grace. Thanksgiving is rejoicing at what God gave when we were undeserving. True gratitude registers surprise that God could be so good to us when we deserve nothing. (See Acts 27:35; 28:15; Romans 6:17; 1 Corinthians 1:4; Colossians 1:12 & Revelation 11:17)

Everyday give thanks for your 
SALVATION 
It is an 
INDISCRIBABLE GIFT! 
(2 Corinthians 9:15)

2) The Condition Of Thanksgiving Is Agreement
Thanksgiving means that you agree with God. Thus, the Bible encourages you to give thanks in all circumstances (see 1 Thessalonians 5:18) and to pray about things that concern you most by making your petitions with thanksgiving (see Philippians 4:6)

O Give Thanks to the LORD, for He is GOOD: for His MERCY endures FOR EVER! (Psalm 106:1; 107:1; 118:1; 136:1) Be in agreement that whatever may be our situation, God is still GOOD and MERCIFUL!

3) The Response Of Thanksgiving Is Praise And Worship
Thanksgiving responds to God's specific acts. Praise and thanks are thus natural partners in worship (see Psalms 100:4; Hebrews 13:15). Your prayers and your actions worship your Creator. When you thank God, you enter His presence, worship Him, and present an offering to Him.


4) The Occasion For Thanksgiving is Everything
Nothing should escape your thanksgiving. God is active in every area of your life and can show you His direction even in the darkest hour. Thanking God frees Him to work in your life through those circumstances.





5) The Reward Of Thanksgiving 
Is God's blessings, peace, joy, growth, worship, and life in Christ. If you have trouble giving thanks under any circumstances, ask the Spirit to fill you (see Ephesians 5:18-20)



An extract from MasterLife - The Disciple's Victory by Avery T. Willis, Jr.
Blessings - TPWC

Thursday, April 04, 2019

THE SPIRIT OF THANKSGIVING (PART 4) - DISARMING HELL THROUGH THANKSGIVING


Thanksgiving agrees with Heaven by acknowledging the truth that our lives are a gift from God, and that He is sovereign over all. God is extravagantly generous, and the life He has given us to experience on this planet is NOT a life of survival BUT of abundance and blessing. BUT unless we properly recognize what we've been given, we won't be able to experience it's benefit.

Imagine Christmas morning. You've spent the last few months shopping and picking out unique gifts for each of your family members that show your intimate knowledge of their interests and desires. You have spared no expense to get gifts of the highest quality that will be both enjoyable and beneficial to each person. BUT when your family comes to the Christmas tree, one person completely ignores the presents. Another person opens your gift, but starts using it for something other than what it was made for. Still another just holds the gift, and refuses to unwrap it. And to make the matters worse, none of them even acknowledge that their gifts are from you.

The Spirit of Thanksgiving
Sadly, this is how many Christians respond to God's gifts, particularly the gifts of the Spirit. So many people fail to receive what the Lord has offered them because they don't understand what the gifts are or how to use them. They say ridiculous things like, "Well, tongues is the least of the gifts, so I don't need to pursue it." If my children said this about one of the presents I had put under the tree for them, I'd be very upset. I'd say, "This is yours! I don't care how small you think it is. I bought it with you in mind, and I don't give cheap gifts. If you'll just open it, I'll show you what it is and how to use it." Such a rejection of gifts is absolute arrogance.

Thankfulness carries an attitude of humilityThanksgiving is the ONLY proper way to receive what God has given us because it honours our relationship with Him by expressing trust in His goodness, even if we don't understand what we've received. God gives us "every good and perfect gift" for TWO primary reasons. He gives to make us prosper so we can succeed in life, and He gives to demonstrate His love as an invitation to relationship. When we practice thanksgiving as a LIFESTYLE, we recognize that the gifts we have received from the Lord came with these purposes. Thanksgiving sets us on course to know God in relationship and discover the reasons for which He made us.

THE GREAT PRICE OF LITTLE THANKS

When God tells us to give Him thanks, He's not insinuating that He gives in order to get something from us. He doesn't manipulate us with His gifts. He wants us to thank Him because thankfulness acknowledges the truth about our lives. And when we agree with the truth, then truth sets us free to see and manifest the greatness that He has put in us as the ones He has made in His image.When we withhold thanks from God, we actually cut ourselves off from who we are. This is what Paul explains in Romans 1:18-21.

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness ... so that they are without excuse, because, although they knew God they did not glorify Him as God,nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.

Futile means purposeless. When we fail to sustain the response of thanksgiving for EVERYTHING in our lives, our thinking is cut off from our purpose in God. When we lose sight of our purpose, we will inevitably make choices that are outside of God's intentions for our lives, and this can only be destructive because it works against His design for us. A dark heart is a heart that is unable to perceive spiritual reality. It is unmoved by the desires and affections of the Lord, and therefore cannot respond to His invitation to relationship, which is the source of life.

THE PURIFYING NATURE OF THANKSGIVING

Since thanksgiving keeps us sane and alive by connecting us to the source of our life and purpose, it makes sense that Paul instructs us to give thanks "in everything."

Thanksgiving Keeps Us Sane And Alive

But there is a specific dimension of thanksgiving that s particularly powerful in times of difficulty and adversity. We find this principle in Paul's first letter to Timothy.

Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons...commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth. For every creature of God is good, and nothing is to be refused if it is received with thanksgiving; for it is sanctified by the words of God and prayer (1 Timothy 4:1-5)

When Paul says that thanksgiving sanctifies unclean food, he is saying that it sets it apart for God and His purposes. Thanksgiving actually changes the very nature of the food into something holy. This truth extends beyond unclean food. It extends to EVERY SITUATION in your life in which you find other powers at work besides the power of God. It is vital to remember that NOT EVERYTHING happens in life is His will. He didn't cause the crisis a nation or individual may be facing. He actually can't give things that are not good because He doesn't have them. God only give good good gifts, because He is good, and has only good gifts to give. So giving thanks IN EVERYTHING does not mean saying that the adversity came from God. But giving thanks in the midst of an adverse situation, a difficulty intended to undermine your faith and destroy you, enables you to take hold of that situation and set it apart to God and His purposes. When you give thanks, the weapon the enemy meant to use to dislodge you from your divine purpose is put into your hands and becomes the very thing that brings you more fully into that purpose. Jesus declared that He sends us out with the same assignment the Father gave to Him - to destroy the works of the devil (see 1 John 3:8)Thanksgiving accomplishes the divine of the Kingdom, where the enemy is destroyed by the very thing he intended to use for our destruction. Just knowing that we can participate in destroying the enemy's purposes should alone move us to give thanks!

RELEASING JUSTICE

One of the clearest examples of divine justice in Scripture is found in the Book of Esther: the story of Haman, who was hung on the very gallows he built to destroy Mordecai. Later, this justice was made even more complete when Modecai assumed Haman's position in the king's court. The wonderful thing about this story is that Mordecai didn't have to bring justice himself. He simply kept his focus on his duty to the heathen king and to his people. This is the nature of warfare in the Kingdom. We don't battle by focusing on the devil. We keep our focus on the King and His Kingdom, and the devil cannot help but be unseated by God's ever-increasing government released through our lives, which illustrates another reason why thanksgiving is powerful in times of adversity. Psalm 100:4 says that we "enter His gates with thanksgiving." Thanksgiving brings us into the manifest presence of God and connects us with what He is doing and saying in the midst of our circumstances. Thanksgiving helps to establish our focus on Him so that our awareness SHIFTS from earthly reality to heavenly reality - which we must do in order to release the strength of Heaven into our circumstances.

KEEPING MY AWARENESS OF GOD

When I stay close to the presence of God through thanksgiving, I not only become aware of His absolute ability to invade the impossible, I sense His radical love and delight in me! As I give thanks for the good gifts He's put in my life, I present convincing evidence that He is my Father, He is for me, and His opinion pretty much cancels out all the others. The wonderful thing is that we simply begin to give thanks, even when it seems difficult to remember one answered prayer, it isn't too long before our focus on the good in our lives creates an opening for the Lord's joy. And It 's the joy of the Lord that is our strength. I believe that James was talking about giving thanks when he said to COUNT IT ALL JOY in trial, because giving thanks usually includes taking an inventory of God's gifts in your life. Do the math! If you want to discover the ability of thankfulness to bring you strength in difficulty, you need to keep COUNTING these things UNTIL you come to the conclusion - IT's TIME TO REJOICE! It becomes really hard to stay depressed about your circumstances when you're filled with the awareness of the love and goodness of God that surrounds and infuse your life.

There is a level of life we can reach where we practice THANKSGIVING AS A LIFESTYLE - a place where we remember our answered prayers. When difficulty comes along, we have a huge inventory of blessings instantly accessible to bring us into His presence as well as the joy and delight He has over us. That is far greater than any accusation, crisis, or conflict that could come our way. When we learn to live in THIS REALM, NOTHING can deflect us from our purpose. We even make the enemy help us get it done. From Heaven's perspective, it is reasonable to give thanks "IN EVERYTHING"!
An extract from the book - Strengthen Yourself In The Lord by Bill Johnson
Blessing
TPWC

Thursday, March 07, 2019

THE SPIRIT OF THANKSGIVING (PART 3) - REPLACE THE SPIRIT OF GRUMBLING WITH THE SPIRIT OF THANKSGIVING

Replace The Spirit of Grumbling With the Spirit of Thanksgiving

Have you ever stepped outside your door on a beautiful clear sunny day, taken a deep breath of fresh air, and thanked God for His wonderful creation? But what if the next morning is grey and rainy? Does it automatically make you feel a little depressed as you look out of the window? Maybe you don't say it loud, but how do you feel? Are you in the habit of thanking God only for what you want? or are you in the habit of grumbling just a little when things does not go the way you like? 

So what is wrong with a little complaining? What difference does it make? It does make all the difference in the world. Everything depends on how we respond to the little things in life. A marriage counsellor will tell you that a marriage usually breaks up over little things. A small misunderstanding can start a war. Little things mean a lot, because this is the level where we live, down at the nitty-gritty of our attitude at breakfast table, or in the long checkout line at the supermarket.



GRUMBLING IS THE VERY OPPOSITE OF THANKSGIVING 
A complaint is the opposite of trust; a murmur against your wife when she burns your toast is the opposite of a loving acceptance. The dictionary defines a complaint as an accusation. By complaining and grumbling you are actually accusing God of mismanaging the details of your life. The attitude of thanksgiving and praise releases the power of God into our lives, but the attitude of murmuring and complaining blocks that power. 

For forty years the Israelites wandered in the wilderness and every time something went wrong, they complained bitterly and wanted to go back to the land of Egypt. Why did it take them forty years to cover less than two hundred miles? Even with women and children and cattle, they could have covered the distance in a few weeks. They were delayed because they murmured and refuse to trust that God would keep His promise to take care of their every need. In 1 Corinthians 10:10-11, the apostle Paul was speaking about the behaviour of the Israelite in their wanderings from Egypt to the Promised Land ... "And do not grumble, some of them did and were killed by the destroying angel. These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us ..." (Extract from Power In Praise by Merlin R. Carothers) 

To be a worshipper, we need to begin by DISCIPLINING our lives daily with the spirit of thanksgiving. This is easier said than done because most of us would agree that we are habitual grumblers. We grumble when we miss the bus to work and when we have to work late. We complain when the car would not start or when we hit a red light or are caught in a traffic jam. Even at meal time, we unconsciously complain about the food and the poor service provided by the restaurant. The list is endless ... but let us take heed that unless we overcome this deadly habit of grumbling, complaining and murmuring, it will rob us of the blessings and joy of the Lord. 

"IN EVERYTHING GIVE THANKS FOR THIS IS THE WILL OF GOD" 1Thessalonians 5:18. The simple application of this biblical truth covers EVERY situation or circumstance in our lives.
The benefits of a thankful heart are many ... by giving thanks:
1) We are in His divine will and itself will lead us out of the wilderness experience and into a victorious walk with the Lord
2) We have immediate access to enter into His gates (His presence) and in His presence is fullness of joy (Psalm 100:4, 16:11)
3) The joy of the Lord is our strength (Nehemiah 8:10).

No wonder the apostle Paul in Philippians 4:4 commanded us to "Rejoice in the Lord always!"and in Colossians 3:17 that "Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks ..."

GRUMBLING VS THANKSGIVING
Unbelief - Faith / Trust
Defeat - Victory
Anger - Joy
In The Wilderness - In His Will 
Degradation - Transformation


Make a point today to make a choice to give thanks and count it all joy even in diverse circumstances (James 1:2) ... for ALL THINGS work together for good (Romans 8:28)