Give thanks to God. It not only shows our gratitude but it reminds us where all our blessings come from.
In marriage, it is easy to get caught up in the day to day and start to look to each other for what we need. However, we set ourselves and our husbands up for failure when we do that. When we make a choice to give thanks to God it changes our perspective. Sure, our spouses bless us and so we look to them with appreciation but we must be careful not to look to them with expectations only God can fulfill. They are a gift from God.
People receive houses and money from their parents, but a good wife is a gift from the Lord. Proverbs 19:14
We should give thanks regardless of how we feel.
I know there have been points in my life where I did not feel like giving thanks to God… for anything. I looked around and in that moment didn’t see anything good. I wanted to get mad and say anything but words of thankfulness. But I knew that God was still God no matter my circumstances. I knew I should give thanks out of obedience to His word.
Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk, or crude joking, which are out of character, but rather thanksgiving. Ephesians 5:4
A Psalm of David when he feigned madness before Abimelech, who drove him away and he departed. I will bless the LORD at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth. Psalm 34:1
And whatever you do, in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. Colossians 3:17
Give thanks in every circumstance, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:18
In those situations, as soon as I start to give thanks my attitude changes and every where I look there is something to thank God for. Did everything change in that instance? No, what changed was my focus. Instead of giving in to my feelings I decided to give in to my faith. My feelings have led me astray but my faith in Jesus has not. Our feelings and emotions are our flesh. We must do everything we can to welcome God and His presence in to our lives so that we can live by His spirit instead of our flesh.
He who trusts in his own heart is a fool Proverbs 28:26a
The heart is deceitful above all things Jeremiah 17:9a
All the “bad” that was going on… was still going on… but in that moment I could see the good God was working out of the bad.
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28
We have been married almost 6 years. God has done a lot in those years. We have been through a lot. Sometimes we have felt like giving up. We have wrestled with the thought that our lives would be easier if we didn’t pursue what God was calling us to do. The truth is our lives probably would be easier but they would not be Godly.
The thing that made our hard times harder instead of heavenly was when our focus was on us and not Him. When I was looking to my husband to bring balance and peace to my life it put pressure on him that was not his to bear. And it went both ways. We are getting faster at recognizing when we are doing this. We are trying to realize quicker so that we can readjust. When we are impatient with one another or when there seems to be a lot of miscommunication going on… our perspectives need changing not our circumstances. In those times we need to focus on God and all of His goodness and give thanks.
Would it be easier for us and for our marriage if God would just change our circumstances? YES! Of course it would. But would that be the best for us? Would that prepare us for heaven? Would that draw anyone else to Jesus by our actions and obedience? Would that bring us closer together as a couple? Would that grow our faith and deepen our relationship with God? No.
When we give thanks to God we grow our faith. When we depend on God individually it brings us closer as a couple. When others see how we point to Jesus in hard times they will be drawn to Him. Life is hard. Marriage is Hard. But if we let it… it will prepare us for Heaven.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. Proverbs 3:5-6
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 4:6-7
I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world. John 16:33
Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen. Ephesians 3:20-21