40 Days of Discipline

40 Days of Discipline:  Day 2 – Group Bible Study


Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! (Philippians 4:4, New International Version) 

…give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. (1 Thessalonians 5:18, New International Version)

Theme:  Rejoicing and Thanksgiving


Many thanks to those who shared their definitions yesterday.  Words can lose their significance through common usage.  It is sometimes helpful to revisit and reflect on important words.  Rejoicing and thanksgiving certainly fall in the important category.

One important take-away from the definitions provided yesterday is the implied recognition that our views of rejoicing and thanksgiving are impacted by how we relate to God.  We will return to this important concept later in our 40-day journey.    

Today we want to focus on Paul’s insistence that we perpetually maintain an attitude of rejoicing and thanksgiving.  Rejoicing “in the Lord always” and giving thanks “in all circumstances.” Paul’s admonitions hold the potential to profoundly impact our lives.       

Bible Study Passages:

Our Scripture passages are again presented above.  Please continue to reflect on the verses and answer the questions below.    


How do you relate to the expectations of rejoicing in the Lord always and giving thanks in all circumstances?   Do you think these are realistic expectations?

Sharing your thoughts could be a big help to someone else.  Please leave a comment on the blog.

8 thoughts on “40 Days of Discipline:  Day 2 – Group Bible Study

  1. These are daily desires and goals. Honestly, however, it is difficult to achieve. Reliance on the Holy Spirit and prayer are essential

  2. Rejoicing in the Lord and always giving thanks is not typical. Many people allow stressors in life to cause sleepless nights, make them angry, cause them to always worry, etc.
    However, always rejoicing and giving thanks in all circumstances is not unrealistic. The truth is, if we trust in God like we are supposed to, have total faith in Him, and live each day knowing that He has our best interest in mind, and that no matter what we’re going through He is with us, rejoicing and giving thanks will become a way of life, as it should be for children of God.
    We may have to work on it daily, and catch ourselves every time we start to worry or get stressed out, until we get to the point where no matter what, we can have a smile on our face as we think about the fact that even if our circumstance is not how we think it should be, or it’s not the best, we know that God is right there with us.
    When we get to this point, always rejoicing and giving thanks will be our reality. (Grumbling and complaining have never made anything better anyway.)

  3. Rejoicing in the Lord & giving thanks in all circumstances is difficult for me. Sadness & anxiety comes before being somewhat joyful & giving thanks. Only after I immerse myself in God’s Word & prayer is there another perspective, new thoughts. And it’s not immediate. I have to constantly remind myself of God’s Word, His promises, His strength.

  4. Rejoicing in the Lord and giving thanks is always difficult for us especially when going through trying matters especially as “frail” human beings we like to think that we are in control!. However, when we trust Him and turn everything over to the Lord and wait on Him we cannot but rejoice and give thanks and praise because He is with us and is always faithful to answer and guide us.

  5. The joy we have in the Lord is different. It stays with us even though we have challenges in our journey. I think that flows from the grace of God and the Love that only He can provide.

  6. I find it hard to rejoice and give thanks all the time and in ever circumstance. I’m not feeling well today and I don’t feel particularly joyful or in a thankful mindset. But I still have so much to be thankful for that should give me joy. It takes spiritual energy and muscle to do what Paul is describing. When I don’t it shows how weak those muscles are due to lack of training. Maybe what I need to give up for Lent is my spiritual laziness and start to use my rejoicing and thanksgiving muscles.

  7. We can always choose to rejoice in and give thanks for who God is, in spite of and separate from our circumstances. It is a spiritual battle that the believer has been equipped with the Holy Spirit to win even if it is in tears and suffering. I believe this opens the floodgates of grace sufficient, moment by moment, day by day. It is not easy, but it is possible because there is ALWAYS hope in the righteous character of God and His promises.

  8. There is a clear point of commonality in the responses – the need to rely on God. To paraphrase some of the practical examples of reliance in the responses above: submit to the Holy Spirit, conform to biblical principles, access God’s grace moment by moment, develop spiritual muscles by consciously choosing to practice rejoicing and thanksgiving. Thanks for all your contributions!

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