In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. (1 Thessalonians 5:18)
I asked Abba what He wanted me to write; the past week, I've been just so content spending time with Him and sitting at His feet learning what He's teaching me right now. I just felt amazing peace within me.
"Whatever that's in your heart." I heard His gentle voice.
What I sense in my spirit is Abba's desire for His people to give thanks. It sounds so simple and almost too "basic", but the truth is many have deserted this sacred place. And while it is good to give thanks in abundance and when everything works well in our lives, the real stuff lies in giving thanks when we have no reasons to do so, except for one reason: Abba is good.
God is perfect goodness
God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. (1 John 1:5)
There were moments in the past where saying, "God is good" hurt. They hurt because I went through so much pain, abuse, and betrayal, one after another that left me almost numb. But when I brought myself to say it anyway, because that's what the Bible says, with whatever little faith left within me, something happened inside of me. A new strength that's not my own.
It took some time before I understood why all those things were allowed in my life. And I have arrived in a place where, by His grace, I can truly say what Joseph said to his brothers in Genesis 50:20
But as for you, you thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.
I can clearly see that God is good in my life. All those years where He allowed the processing to shape and mould me, they were to prepare me to be a vessel of honour. But the enemy were trying to plant his lies all along, telling me that all the bad things happened because I deserved those, because I was bad, because I was unworthy. Such a liar!
Good stuff takes time
About a week ago, as I walked towards him one morning, I saw Abba digging something out from soil. He had a big smile when He got it in His hands. It wasn't clear at first what that thing was, but as I got closer to Abba, I realised it's a diamond.
The thing is, the diamond was already cut, but it was dirty and covered in soil.
He told me then that the diamond was me - that completely took me by surprised!
So I did a bit of research about diamonds - how they are formed and the process they have to go through before they are appreciated.
Do you know how diamonds are formed?
Diamonds are formed deep within the Earth about 100 miles or so below the surface in the upper mantle - with intense heat and pressure. Once formed, these are what we call rough diamonds.
Have you seen a rough diamond? It doesn't look like anything in Tiffany's counter! If you are not a trained diamond appraisal, you will think it's just a piece of glass. But all the value and preciousness are in that chunk of glass-look-alike. It needs to be cut and polished a few rounds before people can appreciate it.
I asked Abba to explain and He told me, "Do you remember many years ago someone told you that you are a rough diamond? That's true. But you are not just a rough diamond, you are a rare one too. That's why it took Me a great care to process and to bring the shine out of you."
"Now, you are almost ready. You just need a little cleaning and final polishing, and you're all set. Soon, people will see your value and your worth."
I listened to Abba and I reflected on my journey from 20 years ago to where I am today, and I understood. All those pain, hurts, betrayal, and even abuse (physical, emotional, spiritual) were to shape me into a precious diamond that I already was.
Now here's an important fact: it takes a very skilful person to cut a rough diamond - and no two diamonds will be cut the same, every piece is different. The cutter will figure out the best possible shapes of the diamond in order to minimise waste and maximise the yield of the rough stone. Cut it wrongly, and there's no undo button.
Abba is that skilful cutter.
What giving thanks reveal
Like I said above, it's easy to give thanks when things go well in our lives. But when they don't, the only reason we are able to give thanks to Abba is because we know Him, His heart, His way, His nature. And that is through relationship that will take time.
Do you know Abba? His heart for you? He longs to reveal Himself to you. Seek Him today and just be interested in Him as a person, not in what He can give you. And give thanks for such a privilege to be His child.