The word of God admonishes us in 1 Thess. 5:18 that, “in everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” On should ask, is it possible to thank God in all circumstances? If my loved one dies, why and how could I give thanks in such situation? I would contend here that it takes the grace of God to do this; but thank God, His grace is available for us all.
It was this grace that Jesus Christ exhibited, knowing that He was about to die, but gave thanks as He broke and shared bread at the last supper. He was thanking God for the bread which represented His body that was about to be brutally bitten and destroyed on the cross of Calvary (Luke 22:19).
- This thanksgiving came from an inner joy, knowing that His death was about to save many people as prophesied ( 53:11).
- He was thankful, not for the present, but for the future. So it is that our thanksgiving should not be based on the goodies we have today, but on the eternal life Christ has secured for us forever.
- Be thankful today, though a loved one has passed, because of long life of your loved one. Martin Luther King said, “longevity has its place…” The Bible says, “… with long life will I satisfy you … ( 91:16).
- Be thankful that your loved one will not die again, as a child of God who believed in Jesus (1 Cor. 15:52-53).
- Be thankful that he/she has now entered a place where there is fullness of joy – because the place is the presence of God ( 16:11).
This is the place we all should aspire to reach. And the way to the place is JESUS. I admonish you to begin or continue to live your life in Jesus now – while you have the chance. Jesus says, “I am the way, the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:6)