Give thanks for everyone! It’s easy to give thanks for those who help and encourage us but let me suggest that giving thanks for everyone, is often a neglected part of our prayers! In 1 Timothy chapter 2 verse 1 we are urged above all else: “to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf and give thanks for them.” (NLT) In this Bible verse we are instructed to be thankful for all people. Think about that! We are to be thankful for those we don’t agree with, those who seek to control us, those who reject us and those who speak evil of us. Thanking God for those we find hard to love shifts something in the heavenlies! It is working in the opposite spirit! Jesus said we are to love our enemies! Do good to those who hate us. Bless those who mistreat us. Pray for those who hurt us. (Luke 6:27-28) To love our enemies, do good to those who hate us, bless those who mistreat us and thank God for all of them is a challenge for all of us!

Regularly people share with me how they have been abused and for most of them thanking God for their abusers is extremely hard, until they understand the power of thankfulness. 1 Timothy chapter two continues to explain. Praying and giving thanks produces peace: “You should pray for rulers and for all who have authority. Pray for these leaders so that we can live quiet and peaceful lives.” When you pray with thanks for your boss, partner, Pastor, Government leader or anyone else in authority, it enables them to have their eyes open to the truth. Let’s read on, “This is good and pleases God our Saviour, who wants everyone to be saved and to understand the truth.” God loves the person who is controlling you, abusing you, rejecting you, saying all kinds of things against you. He wants you to pray and thank him for them so that you will live in peace and their eyes to be open to the truth of his love, freedom and grace.

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