1 Timothy 2:1-2 I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; 2 For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.
The giving of thanks or a thankful heart has an important connection to our prayer life. To the Christian, every day as well as our prayer life should be filled with thanksgiving. Life has a dark side and a bright side, but we will see exactly what we train ourselves to see. Our outlook on life is entirely dependent on our inner attitude, and thanksgiving keeps our attitude focused on the right things. On the other hand, ingratitude could be said to be one of the greatest sins of mankind. It is a sign of a foolish heart, puts out the light of God in our life (Rom. 1:21) and is a prominent sign of the last days (2 Tim. 3:1,2). A spirit of thanksgiving, though, should mark the life of a Christian and be a vital part of prayer.
Thanksgiving is to accompany our prayers of petition (Phil. 4:6; Col. 4:2). Giving thanks in advance of receiving is an expression of our faith. To acknowledge a gift you’ve received is to seal the transaction with “Thank You”. After asking, thanksgiving will hold your heart steady until you physically receive it.
Thanksgiving is to be given for all men as a part of our prayer life (1 Tim. 2:1). It’s to be done first of all (or as a priority) as are supplications, prayers and intercessions. The apostle Paul practiced this for Believers at:
Rom 1:8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world.
1 Cor 1:4 I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ;
Eph 1:16 Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers;
Phil 1:3 I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, 4 Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy,
Col 1:3 We give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you,
1 Thess 1:2 We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers;
All were less than perfect; all had areas that needed to be corrected and addressed in his letters to them; yet, he still gave thanks. Perhaps our prayer life is God’s workshop or workbench where He develops a thankful heart in us.