It's what we'll be doing forever. Oh, I'm sure it's not all we'll be doing forever, and yet I am confident that every action, thought, word, or undertaking throughout our entire, endless life with the Lord will be an expression of (literally) undying gratitude.
We know that day and night, the four living creatures in heaven "never cease to say, 'Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord God Almighty, who was and is and is to come!'" (Revelation 4:8). The twenty-four elders fall on their faces before Him, saying, "We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty, who is and who was, for you have taken your great power and begun to reign" (11:17). Even now. Right this minute. Gratitude is the unending anthem of heaven.
And every time we speak and live out our thankfulness here on this very temporary base of operations, we join our voices with the grand chorus of gratitude that wells up before the throne of God, and we prepare ourselves for what we'll be doing throughout all eternity, glorifying and thanking Him for all he is and for all He has done.
So think of today as a "dress rehearsal." And do it just the way you will when you're doing it "live" at the actual performance.
…Listen, dear friend, God loves you, His promises are sure, and your heavenly destiny is settled forever if you've trusted Christ Jesus as your Lord and Savior. But some of the holy work we need done in us and through us can only come through the valley of shadow and suffering. Are you going to be resistant to that? Or are you going to be clay in His hands, knowing that He is intent on shaping you into the image of Christ and wants to use your life for something far bigger than your own comfort, convenience, and pleasure? He wants your life to be part of a grand, eternal redemptive picture that portrays the wonder of His saving grace. One day that picture will be complete and together we will magnify Him forever.
In the meantime, we can go surrendered and willingly, trusting God and His higher ways, or we can go kicking and screaming. The choice is ours.
I want us all to go forward in ways that are pleasing to Him, ways that place us in the center of His great will and plan. So I say to you, and I say to myself: let's go humbly, in faith, and on bended knee.
And for our own good and His glory, let's go gracefully. And gratefully.
Question: What is one thing you can thank God for today in anticipation of this endless gratefulness we will experience in heaven?