Granted, feeling thankful about a thing or event is something we naturally do… something of a ‘response’ to your appreciation of that thing/event, and possibly even an assessment of value (you were given something extravagant, say). But, this thankfulness is an accurate and rather predictable response for this thing/event. Sadness, sorrow, whining and even complaining are the same; rather natural and normal responses to a thing or event. In many ways, these are ‘learned’ communication skills. Something we ‘pick-up’ as we grow in our environment.
Unnatural or irrational thankfulness is much tougher to do in ‘sad’ or ‘hard’ circumstances, but Ephesians 5:20 proclaims; “Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;“, and I want you to revisit that passage and recognize it states that we are to be thankful; 1) always, and 2) for all things.
What? There ‘are’ things/events in life that just do NOT seem appropriate that we should express any thankfulness over (death, job loss, disease, injustice, etc). And THAT is the very point if our devotional, today… unlearning our ‘learned’ responses of sadness, complaining, whining… and unnaturally, maybe even irrationally give God thanks, giving God praise, giving God ‘credit’ for the incredulous work He is about to do in your life!
See… applying unnatural and irrational thankfulness (the predicament doesn’t seem to merit this response), you immediately get God’s attention with your faith, with your hope in Him, with your trust that He does have your best interest in mind. Psalms 13:5 even references it as it states; “But I have trusted in thy mercy; my heart shall rejoice in thy salvation.“, which is such a perfect picture of our response to the Lord in the face of chaos, the face of turmoil, the very face of evil itself… not delirious, oblivious, disconnected glee… a faith-walk thankfulness, an irrational but solid trust. Apply this trait in your crazy circumstances and watch your faith leap, watch your joy (serious deep joy) overfill your soul. No longer are you ready to whine about a circumstance or potential outcome… but unnaturally and maybe a little irrationally thankful to the Lord that He IS near and has you right in His will.