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Give thanks for UPs and DOWNs

HIM: "When did you give your life to Christ?"

ME: "Oh, as a child I believed God was cool. About age 19, I started learning how much He loves mankind. God became like ice cream to me; I guess you could say I tasted, and He was good! I considered myself His right then..."

HIM: "But it takes suffering to really appreciate the love of God! How can you call yourself His if you never had an experience that brought you to your knees before Him?"

ME: (scratching my head) "I'm sure I did at some point, but that's not what drew me to God first. In the end, I don't believe WHY we came to Christ is as important as THAT we did."

It's okay to thank God because he delivered you from drug addiction or homelessness, but if you want to praise Him for your 760 credit score or the protection of your privately-schooled children, should you keep it to yourself?

I used to struggle with celebrating the highs in my life because I didn't feel like my "mountain" deserved as much attention as someone else's "valley". Has this ever happened to you?

(Whew!) Good thing God's thoughts are not like our thoughts.

God is greater than our ups and downs. There's no use trying to out-do blessings with burdens just to validate gratitude towards God. So go ahead and shout to the nations, praise Him for the trials AND for the triumphs!

Read Romans 8:38-39 carefully. Does it surprise you that Paul names "angels" and "life" among this list? This really struck a chord in me so I asked God about it and here's what He showed me: Whether it's good or whether it's bad, it isn't greater than God.

God moves in a "whatever it takes" mode when it comes to loving us. We should move the same way when it comes to thanking Him. So whether you were born with a silver spoon in your mouth, or you lived hand-to-mouth all your life, if your "thank you" is sincere, God will honor it.

2 Cor. 1:12 ESV

For our boast is this, the testimony of our conscience, that we behaved in the world with simplicity and godly sincerity, not by earthly wisdom but by the grace of God, and supremely so toward you.

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