By Johnny Zacchio
“Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name.”
Being thankful can sometimes be difficult to do. We are people who have access to excess, and we can lose sight of what’s important, and therefore cultivate an attitude of being ungrateful. I remember a recent birthday I had, opening a gift from a family member and thinking in my ungrateful wicked heart, “That’s all? Is there anything else?” Even in that small moment on my birthday, I lost sight of what matters most, and I allowed myself to be discontented and ungrateful. We as God’s people never, ever, ever have a reason to be ungrateful or unthankful. The writer of Hebrews gives us some instruction on what it means to be thankful, and how we can cultivate an attitude of worship by being thankful; and as a result, live lives that are filled with God’s joy, which gives us God’s strength.
1. “THEREFORE BY HIM …”
Being thankful always needs to start with “by Him.” It’s this idea that thankfulness is only a by- product of God’s work within me. It is not natural for us to be thankful people. If you have an attitude of being ungrateful, ask for God’s enabling, and His power to work in you a heart of gratitude.
2. “LET US CONTINUALLY OFFER …”
Being thankful before God is something that we can actually do by God’s strength, but not only that, it’s something that we can continually do by Gods strength. It’s something that can be consistent in our life. Why? Because we have a God who is unchanging, and is continually present in our lives, working and making us more like Christ. We have a God who is continually gracious and merciful toward us as sinners. We can continually offer thanksgiving to our great God.
3. “A SACRIFICE OF PRAISE TO GOD …”
Being thankful is a sacrifice of praise. As selfish humans, being thankful never comes naturally to us; it takes a great deal of dying to self in order for this attitude to manifest in our lives. It takes our surrender; our will being submitted to His.
4. “THAT IS, THE FRUIT OF OUR LIPS, GIVING THANKS TO HIS NAME.”
Notice this thankful attitude should be the fruit of our lips. When we know who God is—giving thanks to His name—and we consider the amazing and wondrous works that He has done for us, what naturally starts to happen is our hearts overflow and our lips can’t help but speak the praise of God. Fruit is simply a natural by-product of a tree being firmly rooted in healthy soil; and so too, the fruit of our lips can be filled with thanksgiving as we abide in Christ. Immerse yourself and get your roots deeply planted in the Scriptures so that the fruit of your lips and your life will be praise that brings glory to God!
“Give thanks to God the Lord; upon His name now call. Make known among the people on earth what He has done for all. Sing praise to Him, now sing; His wondrous acts proclaim. Rejoice, all you who seek the Lord; come glory in His Name.”
– Susan H. Peterson (Public domain)