A couple really neat stories in the Bible stand out to me when the subject of thankfulness is brought up. One is when Paul and Silas were cast into prison, but instead of grumbling… can anybody tell me what they were upto? Let’s see…

“And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.” (Acts 16:25)

Now if you ask me, few of us have circumstances like Paul and Silas had to complain about. But instead of complaining, they lifted their hands to the Lord with thankful hearts and began to sing praises! Why? Because they took what Jesus said literally when He told them…

Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.” (Matthew 5:11)

They were taking God’s Word seriously, and praising God despite the physical (here and now) circumstances… shouldn’t we be doing the same thing today when things turn black around us?

So what happened to Paul and Silas and their reservations at the local prison? Let’s find out…

“And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one’s bands were loosed.” (Acts 16:26)

Their praises during that time touched the very heart of God, and as a result, the very ground the prison was on shook with an earthquake and they were loosed!! All I can say is… WOW! I guess you could say that their singing out in praises in the face of despair touched the very heart of God! My question to you is, would God not be touched by our praises today? Would He not do the same thing for us today that He did for them?

Another powerful story of thankfulness is the story of Joseph. God gave him visions of his brothers bowing before him, but on the earthly plane he was sold into slavery. Did he once complain? Did he once turn his back on God? He was even offered sex by the wife of Potiphar, and turned his back on sin for the sake of doing what was right! So then what happened? She lied about him and had him threw into prison! Come now, how many of us are in such positions? This man was a beautiful man of God, putting His walk with God above everything in life, and yet he was sold into slavery, then cast into prison? If anybody has a place to grumble, I think it ought to be him! But he had his mind so much on the goodness and promises of God, that it didn’t even phase him! What happened? God promoted him to an extremely high position in the government, and was put in charge of the food (the #1 need of the land) during a famine!

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