3 Stages of Giving Thanks in our Christian Life

Thanksgiving should be more than a holiday. It is an integral part of the Christian life. From its inception to its conclusion, giving thanks is a huge secret to the Christian life, the experience of Christ, and the maintenance of the church life.

Three of Paul’s letters illustrate this this: 1 Thessalonians, Colossians, and Ephesians.

In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. –1 Thes. 5:18

And whatever you do in word or in deed, do all things in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. –Col. 3:17

Giving thanks at all times for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to our God and Father. –Eph. 5:20

Witness Lee comments that these books represent all three stages of our Christian life, which must be characterized by the giving of thanks:

Among the twenty-seven books of the New Testament, only three—1 Thessalonians, Colossians, and Ephesians—mention the matter of giving thanks in everything… The first of these books, 1 Thessalonians, speaks of how we can be saved and how we should have a holy life so that our spirit, soul, and body may be wholly sanctified, making us ready to meet the Lord at His coming. This concerns a proper, general Christian life. The second book is Colossians, which concerns Christ and which eventually speaks about experiencing Christ. The life of experiencing Christ is a life of giving thanks in everything… The third book, Ephesians, which is a sister book to Colossians, concerns the church, and at the end it speaks about the experience of the church. We can have the church life only by living in the spirit. Likewise, such a church life is a matter of giving thanks in all things. Hence, we can see clearly that whether it is the proper Christian life, the life of experiencing Christ, or the church life, each concludes with giving thanks in all things. Our Christian life is of three stages: the general Christian life; the life of experiencing Christ, abiding in Christ, and living Christ; and the church life, the life of experiencing the Body. Every stage of our Christian life involves the giving of thanks in everything. Our Christian life becomes deformed whenever it is separated from the matter of giving thanks in all things.[1]


 

1. Witness Lee, Abiding in the Lord to Enjoy His Life, pp. 31-32

5 thoughts on “3 Stages of Giving Thanks in our Christian Life

  1. Kyle, I also enjoyed your post on three stages of giving thanks in the Christian Life. I appreciate that giving thanks is not just in the general Christian life,but in our progressing experience of Christ, and in the practical church life. This view is very helpful. Giving thanks causes us to live a holy Christian life, to experience more of the all-inclusive Christ and to live a Christ-filled church life. What a wonderful appreciation for giving thanks. “Lord, uplift our practice of giving thanks for the fulfilling of your economy for Christ and the church. Thank you for such a fellowship that brings us on to apprehend more of you for the Body.”

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    • Thanking the Lord is sometimes the hardest thing to do but in my experience it has been a huge secret to staying open to His dispensing. His dispensing requires an arrangement. If we kick against the arrangement, we miss the dispensing. Thanking the Lord is to recognize that He is on the throne arranging every circumstance in our life for our good.

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  2. Pingback: A Deeper Appreciation for Thanksgiving—Not just a Day but a Living | Holding to Truth in Love—Eph. 4:15

  3. Pingback: A Deeper Appreciation for Thanksgiving—Not just a Day but a Living

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