Summary: Thankfulness is far more important to your experience of life than most people realize; it will revolutionize your relationship with God.
1. A thankful heart is far more important to your experience of life than most people realize. Most folks know they should be thankful, but do not put a premium on proactively cultivating a thankful heart.
2. Psalm 50:5 says, “Gather my saints together unto me; those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice.” Verses 14–15 say, “Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the most High. And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.”
3. The Bible is a description of our covenant with God. It reveals to us God’s obligations under that covenant and our obligations under that covenant. If you want the covenant to work for you, it begins by you upholding your part of the covenant. Psalm 50 shows us that we activate our covenant by paying our vows and giving thanks to Him; then He can deliver us in the day of trouble.
4. When we make a mistake, we confess it, put it under the blood, and keep doing the best we can to base our lives on His Word. That’s paying our vows. To do this, you have to become a thankful person, or this verse implies you can’t call on Him in the day of trouble and expect deliverance. Having a thankful heart is basic to the operation of your covenant with God.
5. Psalm 95:2 says, “Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving.” Experiencing the presence of God requires that you be a thankful person. We see it again in Psalm 100:4. “Enter into his gates with thanksgiving.”
6. Second Corinthians 4:15 says, “For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God.” Unless we become a people with a thankful heart, it’s not likely we’re going to see any corporate manifestations of His glory. It is the atmosphere of thanksgiving that sets the stage for the glory of God.
7. Philippians 4:6 says, “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.” For you to have answered prayer, you need to pray out of a heart of thanksgiving. Many Christians pray out of a heart of desperation instead of a grateful heart.
8. Colossians 4:2 says, “Continue in prayer and watch in the same with thanksgiving.” If you want to pray effectively, you’re going to have to cultivate a thankful heart.
9. Colossians 2:7 says, “...rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.” You don’t need a thankful heart to come to a place of faith, because we know from the Word that faith comes by hearing and hearing. As you focus your attention on the Word, faith will come. For you to be rooted and established in faith and not waver every time a little adversity comes requires a thankful heart. Thanksgiving doesn’t open the door to faith; it is what grounds you in your faith.