Thursday, March 15: Now Thank We All Our God
Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 (NIV)
Have you ever stopped for a minute to take in your surroundings? I know I have, but don’t do it enough now. There are fantastic views all over this land of ours. It’s incredible, the different shades of blues and greens that appear in our lakes and oceans. Appreciate nature! Give thanks for all that God has created.
The Thirty Years’ War originated as a religious war between Catholics and Protestants in 1618. Eilenberg became a place of refuge for its people and surrounding communities with its high walls. A Lutheran minister by the name of Martin Rinkart (1636), of Eilenberg, Germany, wrote Now Thank We All Our God, later translated by Catharine Winkworth (1858). Out of so much pain and loss came this great hymn about emphasizing gratitude and one’s faith. Eight million people died during the deadliest religious conflict in European history. Some days, Martin Rinkart performed up to fifty funerals a day. Somehow, finding a way to give thanks to God, even when faced with death and tragedy on this massive scale, helped Martin grow his faith and gave him courage and perspective during the war.
We all will face trials and tribulations in our lifetime that are difficult. Our difficulties we face are all teachable moments that help build character. At first it may not be easy, but always be thankful. The first line says, “Now thank we all our God, with heart and hands and voices, Who wondrous things has done, in whom this world rejoices.” I know that I am blessed to lead a life of independence in a wheelchair, because I can go from point A to point B on my own. For that I give thanks!