Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
When I was young, we sang a chorus at church that repeated the theme today’s passage “Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I say Rejoice!” The verse is actually take from the fourth chapter of Philippians, but I was reminded of it when I read the passage above.
Are you joyful all the time? Do you always have a bounce in your step? A smile on your face? Me neither.
As the Apostle Paul grew in his place in Christ he learned that whatever the change, the challenge, the circumstance, or the crisis, to rejoice. This kind of joy is more than that situational because it is an expression of a confident faith built on a relationship with Christ.
These verses have two keys to being joyful always.
- Pray continually
- Give thanks in all circumstances
Praying continually doesn’t mean that we lock ourselves in a room and do nothing but pray. It does mean that we have a constant attitude of prayer and set aside specific times to pray.
Second, notice that we are to give thanks in all circumstances, not for all circumstances. We can choose to be joyful no matter what stressors we are facing during the day