Where do your thoughts go when your mind wanders? Do they go to God? Or do they flutter around the various concerns of your day? I read a beautiful quote once, a part of a poem where the poet desired Christ to be the “home” of his thoughts. Instead of going home to God, I feel my thoughts often wander to worry, sadness, fear, or my (many) unmet desires.
I started thinking this morning about how my life would be different if I filled up my spare thought-moments with praising the Lord, giving Him thanks for all the things that He does and has done for me. It is God’s will for us to always be joyful, always be thankful, no matter our circumstances.
1 Thessalonians 5:16 “Rejoice ALWAYS.”
1 Thessalonians 5:18 “In EVERYTHING give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ for you.”
God’s will for us is always best. And if you really think about it, would you rather spend your life feeling thankful or wishing for things you hadn’t been given? Rather be rejoicing in the abundant love that Christ has shown you, or feeling miserable because of the trials that are inevitable in this life?
Praising is a choice — in Hebrews it’s even called a sacrifice (Hebrews 13:15). I can see that to be true — at times praising is the last thing I feel like doing. But God doesn’t ever return empty the things you give to Him. He also never asks us to do things that aren’t ultimately for our own good.
I know that many things that happen in life are truly heartbreaking, and can be legitimately worrisome. I’m not saying to disregard or stuff your feelings or emotions. Rather, I would say that once you’ve recognized your feelings and told the Lord about them, make the choice to praise Him anyway.