Saturday, January 23, 2016

Thanks Living: Blithesomeness

For the Lord will comfort Zion, He will comfort all her waste places; He will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the Lord; Joy and gladness will be found in it, thanksgiving and the voice of melody. Isaiah 51:3

Joy: exultation, cheerfulness; specifically, welcome - gladness, joy, mirth, rejoicing
Gladness: lighthearted; merry; cheerful, blithesomeness
Thanksgiving: in songs of liturgical worship (of or relating to formal public worship)
Voice: meaning to call aloud, thunderous
Melody: as subject of song, to celebrate in song and music -- give praise

The prophet exhorts the children of Abraham to trust in the Lord; and briefly, but beautifully, describes the great blessedness which should be the consequence, Isaiah 51:1-3. 
Adam Clarke Commentary

Listen to Me, you who follow after righteousness, You who seek the Lord. Isaiah 51:1a

Obeying God fills one with a sense of awe, wonderment and cheerfulness. Blithesomeness (a new word for me), meaning:
Blithe: without thought or regard; carefree; joyous or merry in disposition
Some: characterized by

So, the result of trusting and obeying God is being characterized with a disposition of joyfulness! 

Disposition: the predominant or prevailing tendency of one's spirits; naturalmental and emotional outlook or mood; characteristic attitude.

Blithesomeness the PREDOMINANT tendency of one's spirit, characteristic attitude—that's what Thanks Living is all about! Having a predominate tendency to give thanks and praise to God! And notice is all STARTS with trusting God. 

Thanks Living—Blithesomeness! 

Friday, January 22, 2016

Thanks Living: Surround Sound

So I brought the leaders of Judah up on the wall, and appointed two large thanksgiving choirs. One went to the right hand on the wall toward the Refuse Gate. The other thanksgiving choir went the opposite way, and I was behind them with half of the people on the wall, going past the Tower of the Ovens as far as the Broad Wall, So the two thanksgiving choirs stood in the house of God, likewise I and the half of the rulers with me; For in the days of David and Asaph of old there were chiefs of the singers, and songs of praise and thanksgiving to God. Nehemiah 12:31, 38, 40, 46

Large thanksgiving choirs. 
Songs of praise and thanksgiving to God.

Can you hear the songs of praise and thanksgiving being sung by two large choirs to God? The stereo sound of having one on each side? The first "surround sound"! 

Position Available! 
Job title: Chiefs of the singers
Responsibility: To sing songs of praise and thanksgiving, and lead the Choirs in songs. 
Qualifications: A heart filled with Thanks Living. Willing to worship God with songs of praise and thanksgiving. 

It's much easier to sing praises and give thanks to God in a group. It's important to do that! But true Thanks Living begins in the hearts of individuals. Yes, it must begin in my very own heart. I must be willing to sing praise and thanksgiving to God in private before joining the choir. 

I want to be part of a "Surround Sound Choir of Thanksgiving"! And to be part of that choir, I need to make sure my heart is filled with thanks to God, and that I'm making a habit of Thanks Living. 

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Thanks Living: It is Good!

It is good to give thanks to the Lord, and to sing praises to Your name, O Most High; to declare Your lovingkindness in the morning, and Your faithfulness every night, on an instrument of ten strings, on the lute, and on the harp, with harmonious sound. For You, Lord, have made me glad through Your work; I will triumph in the works of Your hands. Psalm 92:1-4

Good: beautiful, best, better, cheerful, glad, graciously, joyful, kindly, kindness, loving, merry, pleasure, precious, sweet
Give thanks: literally, to use (i.e. hold out) the hand; physically, especially to revere or worship (with extended hands—the open one—indicating power, means, direction, etc.)
Declare: publish declare, proclaim, especially of proclaiming wisdom, power, loving-kindness, etc.,
Lovingkindness: divine attributes, kindness and fidelity
Faithfulness: divine mercy
Made me glad: cause to, make to rejoice, to brighten up
Work: deed of, especially in deliverance and in judgment
Triumph: be joyful greatly, make to rejoice, cause to shout for joy

Want to change your perspective? Want to change your mood? Want to get out of... how did we say it?... the funk? Feeling overwhelmed, grumpy and discouraged? 

The key is to stop and GIVE THANKS to the Lord. It is GOOD. It is joyful, sweet, cheerful to give thanks. When you stop and start giving thanks, your attitude changes. You realize who God is and all that He does. You realize that God is great and that God is good. You begin to see life from His perspective. You begin to see that God is working in and through you and your situation. You begin to see that circumstances will change, but God will not. 

It is Good! Thanks Living will make the heart glad! 

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Thanks Living: Create a Habit!

Do all things without complaining and disputing. Philippians 2:14

Do: perform repeatedly or habitually 
Without: rendering something invalid or valid; through the idea of empty expanse
Complaining: secret displeasure, not openly avowed, a grumbling -- grudging, murmuring
Disputing: a deliberating, questioning, about what is true

This verse is a like a BIG RED stop sign!

Stop the complaining and bickering! Did you notice the definition of "complaining"? Secret displeasure. That mumbling under your breath, silent dissatisfaction—that UGG and sigh.  That  silent displeasure begins to gnaw away at our spirit and opens a featuring wound. And soon that silence can no longer be kept quiet—and soon that habit turns into a roaring lion. 

Do all things without complaining and disputing is NOT just a suggestion.... but NO, really.....STOP!

Stop the complaining and start creating a habit of appreciating, enjoying, praising and harmony—or simply put, create a habit of Thanks Living! 

STOP the complaining and START creating a habit of Thanks Living! 

Monday, January 18, 2016

Thanks Living: Solid Foundation—Faithful

Therefore know that the Lord your God, He is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and mercy for a thousand generations with those who love Him and keep His commandments. Deuteronomy 7:9

Know: have knowledge, make to be known, be learned, perceive, understand, have understanding
Faithful: verified, confirmed, establish, stedfast, sure
Keeps: properly, to hedge about (as with thorns), i.e. Guard; generally, to protect, attend to
Mercy: favor, good deed, kindly, loving-kindness, merciful kindness

Perceive, have understanding, that God, my God is first and foremost GOD! And He is a faithful God! He keeps His promises. Faithful and true. 

Thanks Living begins with having an understanding that God is God and that He is faithful. Knowing that God is the constant and remains faithful, is the solid foundation on which our faith is based. Knowing that God is faithful gives us the assurance that He will accomplish all that He has promised. So, in the midst of trouble, we can know that God is steadfast and sure—and that creates a heart of thanksgiving. 

Thanks Living is not based on gifts received, or a feeling. Rather, it's based on the solid foundation of God Himself—the faithful and true God!