Archive for Tom Saur

Endless Thanks

Posted in General, Scriptures with tags , , , , , , , , , on May 26, 2009 by Juli Jarvis

giftsgraphiclgI’m so ready, finally, to join this group — the Gratitude Community!  The challenge began with Ann Voskamp, and was a challenge (to herself) to come up with One Thousand Gifts from God for which she was thankful.  True to gratitude, it didn’t stop at one thousand, but became a list of Endless Gifts.  

 

And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body.  And be thankful.  Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.  And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.                                       — Colossians 3:15-17 (ESV)

And so, I begin my list of Endless Thanks in the form of this blog.  Take a closer look at the verses above.  I love them.  We even had them read at our wedding.  Our Pastor, Tom,  just reminded us Sunday of the solid advice they contain:

  1. Let the Peace of Christ Rule in Your Hearts.  I think the word “let” is a huge word in these first two points.  We can LET peace rule (control) us in the midst of the conflict, during the trials, not just at the end.  In all things, we can let peace rule rather than anxiety, fear and despair.  Tom compared this to the control of a baseball umpire:  “Let this peace rule — let it be the thing that rules and controls you and keeps you on track.”
  2. Let the Word of Christ Dwell in You Richly.  We can let God’s Word come into our minds and affect how we think.  We don’t have to be controlled by thoughts of rejection, inadequacy or concerns about what others think about us.  Instead, we can fill our minds with the truths of God’s Word.  We can sing songs of gratitude — in fact, psalms, hymns and spiritual songs are one of the best ways to memorize God’s truths, and to express what you’re feeling.  He suggested we sing what we’re experiencing — blues, for instance, came out of tragedy and pain.  It’s interesting to see the words of hymns that came out of the Protestant Reformation.  Spirituals came out of slavery.
  3. Whatever You Do, in Word or Deed, Do Everything in the Name of the Lord Jesus.  It’s not all about us; it’s all about Him!  To quote Tom again, “What is not included in this word, ‘Everything?'”  That made me stop and think!  He also spoke truth to my heart when he said, “Maybe the purpose of your life is not about making you happy, but about making others happy — loving and serving them.”    We live to glorify Him, and that includes thinking of others besides ourselves.   And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.”  –2 Corinthians 5:15 (NIV)
  4. And Be Thankful…With Thankfulness in Your Hearts to God…Giving Thanks to God the Father Through Him.  Tom rightly pointed out that thankfulness is the common thread in all of this — notice how it weaves through all these verses.  He said, “Thankfulness is learning to tie every event in life to God, even the things that hurt the most.  Allow the peace of God to give direction, to impact your life and to overflow to others.”     

EverestCropAs these fall in place — Peace, God’s Word, Purpose, Thankfulness — we will find that everything in our lives points to Christ.  He is central; He rules and controls our very thoughts.  We can then realize that illusive dream — abundant life — and certainly a peaceful and joyful life of Endless Thanks.  Finally, I need to mention that Tom has been battling a mysterious fever and fatigue that has been holding him in illness for over 45 days, since he returned from ministry in Asia, so he knows what he’s talking about.  This is what has come out of that pain, and these scriptures have given Tom the courage he needed to experience peace in the midst of the trials.

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