Well, at the end of the last post of “What I Learned From the Book of Philippians #1,” I wrote this, “A great memory of the important events in your life and the people who mattered most teaches you gratitude and gives you a feeling of thankfulness that never, and I mean never, goes away.”
I also said at the end, that, maybe, you’d enjoy the next blog I wrote. I wish I hadn’t said that because I’ve been feeling under pressure ever since. Not from anyone else, but from myself. In case you haven’t guessed this about me yet, I tend to be much harder than anyone else can or ever would be on myself, and one of the life lessons I’ve learned from this is the always quotable advice from my beloved grandmother. “When you’re extending a little kindness into the world be sure to include yourself.” That’s good advice, too, by the way. Something else I’ll add to this that I’ve learned from the Good Lord Jesus is that You do NOT have the right to judge how you will look at other people or YOURSELF. Only God has the right to judge our hearts, minds, and souls because He’s the only One who can do it fairly, and trust me. He will. The rest of us are far too imperfect to penalize anyone or ourselves for being what we all are; sinful and very human beings.
Now getting back to the Apostle Paul, He not only knew and understand what being grateful meant, and what developing and having a feeling of thankfulness gives you in life, but he understood their obligation. You mean that being grateful and feeling thankful for what one has carries an obligation? In a word, Yes! Paul even states it in the third verse of chapter One. “I thank my God upon every remembrance of you.” If Paul could be thankful to God for every time he remembered someone in his life who loved and helped him, then I can, too, and what’s more I think all of us should be able to find it in our hearts to be able to do so, but then I realize we live in a world where not everyone does. To me, that’s just a bit sad, but then it makes me grateful (and yes, even thankful) for all those people in my life who are. See how that works? 🙂
Not only does Paul thank God for these wonderful people he has in his life, but he takes it to a place where a lot more of us need to follow. Into action, and not just any sort of action, but the action that really is the most powerful thing we can do for anyone which is to call upon the Lord God Almighty and ask that He use His power and all of His resources to bear upon whom we request He use it. Doesn’t mean He will or He won’t because we all know that God knows everything and all there is to know about the connections between our prayers, those we’re praying for, those who are connected to that prayer, and what the results of that prayer and its’ effect will be on everyone involved. But, still, isn’t it wonderful to know that we have that right as His children. What a privilege it is to know that we can come before Almighty God and petition Him, and that He listens to us. If you can’t feel grateful for that, then what can you feel grateful for? I mean really?
Well, I hope I’ve given you a little something to dwell upon in this latest blog. Maybe something you can take and use for yourself. I know it’s a little shorter than the last one, but this is a great place to stop and rest for a moment because in the next one I’m going to take a look at joy, and if you’re going to look at what joy is. Well, having a little time to think about what I’ve already said for a bit won’t do any harm.