We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers, remembering without ceasing your work of faith, labor of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ in the sight of our God and Father, knowing, beloved brethren, your election by God. 1 Thessalonians 1:2-4 NKJV
Did you know the phrase “give thanks” is mentioned 52 times in the NKJV Bible? Surely giving thanks must be important to repeat 52 times! Here’s a sample of a few
- First Chronicles 16:8 “Oh, give thanks to the LORD! Call upon His name; Make known His deeds among the peoples!”
- First Chronicles 16:34 “Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.”
- Psalm 30:4 “Sing praise to the LORD, you saints of His, And give thanks at the remembrance of His holy name.”
- Revelation 11:17 “saying: “ We give You thanks, O Lord God Almighty, The One who is and who was and who is to come, Because You have taken Your great power and reigned.”
We are to give thanks to God, making His deeds known, for His mercy endures forever, at the remembrance of His Holy name, and because He reigns! The Lord God Almighty is good and worthy of praise.
Look at what Paul wrote in today’s verse: “remembering without ceasing your work of faith, labor of love and patience of hope.” What is work of faith, if not the work of the Lord? Praise Him! What is the labor of love, if not Jesus’ great love for us? Thank Him! What is patience of hope, if not God’s patience for us to turn to Him? Glorify Him!
The things which Paul identified in the Thessalonians are all character attributes of God. All of them are visible because God was at work in their lives. What a blessing to see God’s activity in the lives of others. We should look out for those attributes in believers’ lives too. When we spot them, let others know we see them. This kind of encouragement can boost their confidence and continue their walk with Christ.
The last part of verse “knowing beloved, brethren, your election by God” is a great confidence builder as well. Reminding us that our being part of God’s family is not because we’ve done anything to deserve or earn it. It is free gift (Romans 5:15) by the grace and mercy of God alone, that we are adopted into His family (Ephesians 1:5).
Thank God today by remembering all He has done for you and all He promises to do for you in the future (Jeremiah 29:11). While you’re thanking God, think about who you can build up with your words.
Lord, thank you for loving and saving us. Thanks for giving us the desires of our hearts when we seek you. In Jesus’ name we pray Amen.