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    Jumpstart Your Day 5-minute radio broadcasts

Jump-Start Your Day

Friday, July 6th, '18

All rights reserved © message by Kris Jackson

 

WHEN IT'S HARD TO SAY THANKS,

IT HELPS TO GIVE THANKS!

"...he took bread, and gave thanks to God in the presence of them all..." (Acts 27:35)

 

You have to understand that the ship had been tossed around the Mediterranean like a toothpick. They hadn't seen the sun or stars in fourteen days and the crew and passengers had been fasting that whole time, begging God for rescue. Then enters Paul on wobbly sea legs, talking faith, urging everyone to "take nourishment, for this is for your survival, since not a hair will fall from the head of any of you" (27:34). Then he broke a chunk off a stale loaf and gave thanks before commencing to eat. Thankfulness was far from the dominant attitude aboard that ship. But when it is hard to say thanks, it helps to give thanks! "In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you" (1 Thessalonians 5:18). One's attitude determines one's altitude. It was Paul's soul-worthiness that saved them, not the ship's seaworthiness. When we give thanks amid negative circumstances it seems the whole situation does a one-eighty toward the positive.

 

First, God was still Paul's Captain and Pilot regardless of what the shipmaster did. Second, he had received a weather report on his knees in prayer that defied what all meteorologists were saying about the high seas. "For there stood by me this night an angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve" (27:23). It's good to know who you are and Whose you are. Ignore the weather report when you have God's report. As the chorus confesses, "Whose report will you believe? We will believe the report of the Lord". Third, Paul wasn't done with his mission yet so no sea storm, though it blew with the fierceness of "Euroclydon" (27:14), could interfere with God's purpose. "Do not be afraid, Paul; you must be brought before Caesar..." God's MAN can't be finished until God's MISSION is finished. We are safer in a sinking ship in the will of God than we are on dry land out of the will of God!

 

Today is Thanksgiving. Perhaps you are enjoying a rich traditional feast, but then again, maybe you are smack-dab in the middle of Euroclydon. Paul shouted, "Let us keep the feast!" (1 Corinthians 5:8) Even if that feast is just a meager ration of stale bread salted with wet brine. It goes back to making the choice to rejoice. Paul led by example, giving God thanks in the middle of hardship and his lead helped the rest of the human cargo to make it. "Then they were all encouraged, and also took food themselves" (27:36). Their thankfulness didn't shorten the long night, but it made it more bearable. The next morning the ship went down but the people went over and through. I've seen it work in cases of cancer, in impending divorces, while kicking drugs, even kicking the bucket. If you face the storm with praise on your lips you can face the storm with courage in your heart. That was the spirit of the Mayflower and the Santa Maria. Jesus endured the cross because the night before He gave thanks for the wine cup and sang a hymn with His disciples. If we know that all things work together for good then we can voice a hearty thank you even when the bread is stale. God has no intention of leaving you helpless at sea. Right now it may be hard to say thanks, but let me assure you, it truly helps to give thanks.


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