Oftentimes, we’re thankful toward God generally: like when we marvel at things like his goodness or his majesty- or creation.
But scripture also tells us to be thankful specifically:
Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thess 5:18
So yes, in all of it, good times and bad. But its easy to say “Yay God!” when you get the big promotion- but when I can’t pay the bills- Yay God? Or- when that relationship is over- yay? I’m so lonely, but thanks!
Life is hard- but we make it harder. By stopping short.
Because that verse ends- “in Christ Jesus.” Because thankfulness “in Christ” should be insulating us from the ups and downs of life.
So when the good news comes- I’m even more thankful- because I know that I don’t deserve it. It’s only Jesus who has made me righteous. Anything after that is icing on the cake.
And when the bad news comes? I’m even thankful then, because I remember that my worth isn’t decreased; God still loves me. And I’m even thankful he didn’t give me what I really wanted- because he knew that the company would be closing its doors right after I got hired anyway.
So, “in Christ”- in all circumstances- becomes this relief.
You can trust that if we knew what he knew- we wouldn’t want it.
But did you know, that Jesus is thankful for you? Jesus is thankful that God revealed Himself- to us- through Him- and we believed. (Matt. 11:25-26)
We are the apple of his eye. Jesus was so thankful for us that he suffered horrible circumstances so we wouldn’t have to. He didn’t get what he wanted, that the cup would pass from Him, because he wanted you more…
Being more worried about the circumstances of life rather than what those circumstances mean “in Christ”- says that your circumstances are more important than Christ and the gospel principles that go with him, like mercy and grace.
Gospel principles that have been applied to us and that we can then turn around and apply in any circumstance. That’s unthankfulness.