Do you ever wonder why Philippians 4:6 includes the phrase, “with thanksgiving”? “Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God” (HCSB). With Thanksgiving. Why is this so important?
As we move into the week of Thanksgiving, this is a great point to consider. This passage gives us instruction on how to deal with stress and worry. Basically, we are told not to worry about anything. Instead, we should immediately pray about our concerns. Prayer should be our first, not last, response to a concern. Make all your requests to God, but it must be with thanksgiving.
Now that’s not so easy, is it? You’re worried about losing your job, or you’ve been diagnosed with cancer, or you’re greatly concerned with the current culture in our country, and yet you’re supposed to thank God? Your women’s ministry is filled with hurting, broken women — and God says to give thanks?
How do we thank God in these types of circumstances? First of all, could we thank Him for being sovereign over all? For giving us grace and salvation? For showing us how to live in light of eternity, not just our current situation? For hope in all circumstances? For shelter and food? For relationships that have encouraged us? For God’s Word that is always true and never changes?
Leaders: We have so much to be thankful for in the midst of this life. At times you may have to look hard, but when you consider God’s blessings, you show love for and dependence on Him alone. You also serve as a role model for women seeking to follow hard after God and His Word every day — especially when things are tough.
This Thanksgiving, ask the women in your ministry to lay their needs at His feet, and thank Him for His control over all things. Remind them of the promised result we see in Philippians 4:7: “And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus” (HCSB).
Have you ever experienced that kind of peace that made no sense? I have! Ask women to share times when they had unexplainable peace, then pray together for all the women in your ministry to experience peace as a result of praying in faith and with thanksgiving.
We at LifeWay Women pray you have a very thankful Thanksgiving.