5 DAYS OF PRAYER & FASTING

DAY 4

Rise up with Gratitude

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, 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 Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7

REFLECTION

Our relationship with the weather here in the UK will continue to be a source of jokes and laughter that has created many weather memes. We moan when it is too hot and complain when it is cold in the summer. We want the rain for our garden but become angry when it affects our activities. In terms of the weather we can definitely say contentment is not part of our narrative. Our text for today tells us in very clear terms not to be anxious about anything but to be thankful in all situations we face. When God is part and parcel of our narratives then thankfulness should be a normal part of our lives. The bible tells us God’s attitude towards Israel’s consistent complaining and grumbling in the book of numbers “But the whole assembly talked about stoning them. Then the glory of the Lord appeared at the tent of meeting to all the Israelites. The Lord said to Moses, “How long will these people treat me with contempt? How long will they refuse to believe in me, in spite of all the signs I have performed among them? I will strike them down with a plague and destroy them, but I will make you into a nation greater and stronger than they.” Numbers 14. God was prepared to get rid of a whole nation that refused to believe in him but would rather moan and grumble about His ability to provide and care. In the New Testament, Jesus praised and singled out the one leper who came back when he discovered he was healed and we never knew what happened to the other nine who did not bother to come back and say thank you. Today we want to rise up in gratitude because for any follower of Jesus, gratitude should be the norm for our lives.

QUOTES

“If you experience gratitude as a burden, you don’t know gratitude, because true gratitude is not an exertion of the will; it’s an overflow of a sense of being treated better than you deserve.” – John Piper

PRAYER

Those who live with gratitude and have made it a consistent part of their lives are constantly thankful to God and even when prayers seem unanswered their default place is still one of gratitude. So today let us thank God…

  • For his love and presences in our lives
  • For his blessings whether big or small
  • For relationships of family, church and friends
  • For answered prayers and waiting prayers
  • For the ongoing opportunity to become more like Jesus

SONG

MEDITATION

It is so easy to fall into a grumbling mindset because in truth there is so much we can moan and grumble about. We can moan about the weather, the politics of our time, the roads we drive on, the way England’s men football team have been playing. But what we forget is that there are others who will desperately swamp places with us to be where we are. Those are not reasons to put up with things that could be better but it should give us a better perspective to view where we are. Gratitude is a state of mind and so also is grumbling. The good news is that we have the ability to change our mindset default setting.

When I say ‘I WILL’ I am making a determined statement of intent. In some ways I am overriding my emotions and stating what I intend to do. I will be grateful and thankful as I journey through today.

Is that something you can set your mind to do irrespective of what the weather is doing, what is happening politically and the challenges you might be facing. Can you make today a no ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ day but just a day to be thankful. Make a note of how your day of thanksgiving went. 

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