Feb 27

48 Hour Joyful~Praying~Thankful Challenge

Let’s begin by making this personal.  Who’s up for a challenge?

Read out loud our 2nd reflection verse for the week:

“Always be joyful.  Never stop praying.  Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.”~ 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 NLT

Now fill in the blanks with your name.

____________, always be joyful.  ___________, never stop praying.  ____________, be thankful in all circumstances.  ____________, this is God’s will for you.   _____________ belongs to Christ Jesus.

This is not an easy command. It’s challenging. Today let’s take this challenge. It’s the 48 hour Joyful~Praying~Thankful Challenge.  For the next 48 hours be intentional on being joyful (despite your circumstances), praying a lot (even when you don’t feel like it), and remembering to be thankful (despite your circumstances).


Today’s Assignment

Read 1 Thessalonians 5:12-28. This passage includes our reflection verse and more. Highlight or mark verses in this passage that speak to you. Journal how God can use His Word today in your life.

Read Chapter 8, Due to Circumstances beyond Our Control.  

Take Away

What is your take away today?  Share with your OBS Sisters in the comment section of the OBS blog. Also, let us know how you are doing on the 48 Hour Joyful~Praying~Thankful Challenge!

Blog Hop is tomorrow! Here are the topics:

1. Well, that was easy. Check out this week’s reflection verse from I Thessalonians 5:26-18 NLT: “Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.” We invite you to share how this verse helps motivate you to truly be thankful, no matter what, trust God and Let.It.Go!

2. iScream. Chapter Seven. On pages 139-143 in the Putting the Brakes on Busy section, Karen provides several tools to help us trim the fat off our schedules. Which tools will you use on your schedule? What are you able to let go so that you can regain some “schedule sanity”?

3. Serenity. Chapter Eight. Sometimes no matter what we do to try and control a situation…we simply can’t. How has this chapter helped you to discover the difference between what you can and can’t change? OR Can you look back at a time in your life when things were out of your control but you can see how God worked through it all?

 Have a great day friends! I love you~ you bring me joy, I’m praying for you, and I’m so thankful for each of you!  :)  I’ve already started the challenge!




  1. Joan Board says:

    I stayed positive all day, but lately it’s been pretty easy. This study has actually really helped me just let go. I have walked away, just completely from some unnecessary, unwarranted attacks and given all our medical issues to God. These verses have really been terrific. I have paid attention to everything just haven’t had a chance to actually participate. Making my way back!!

  2. Stephanie M says:

    Today’s chapter, verse, and lesson are so important in my life right now! I am in a blended family, and we have a lot going on right now, including the beginning of a custody battle. It has been a stressful time, and I have spent a lot of time worrying over things I have no control over, like the actions of others.

    In Chapter 8 on p 157: “Yes God will prevail no matter what people try to do about it. Especially evil men and women. Others may try to alter the situation by behaving badly. In the end, God still gets his own way.” Wow that was eye opening! How quickly I forget that it doesn’t matter what is going on beyond my control, because GOD is in control of all of it!

    I am taking on the challenge (started late though — after work today). I have written the scripture on a notecard as a note to myself. I’m going to keep it with me for the rest of the week. I’m definitely going to make a point of praying much more often throughout the day. With busy schedules, it is often forgotten except for specified times like quiet time, before meals, and before bedtime, etc. There is no reason why I can’t take a minute to pray when I’m feeling tense or stressed…just give it to God right then. How empowering!

    • Mary G. (OBS Group Leader) says:

      Wow! Thanks for sharing that Stephanie and also the reminder of page 157. I obviously didn’t soak that part in when I read the chapter. Will be reading over that again and highlighting it! Praying for your family situation!!

  3. I’m sitting here in a hospital room reading these chapters-it’s like Karen wrote this book just for my situation. There have been so many things lately I have really needed to just let go of so I can focus on being the hands and feet of Jesus to my sick loved one, and this book has been incredibly instrumental in helping me do that.

    I cannot control these circumstances, nor can I control how others respond. But I can control how I do.

    Thank you again for all that you do to make this study possible-you are all such an incredible blessing! {can you tell I’m practicing being joyful and thankful? :) }

  4. Kendall, be joyful.
    Kendall, never stop praying.
    Kendall, be thankful in all circumstances.
    Kendall, this is God’s will for you.
    Kendall belongs to Christ Jesus.

    A note from my NIV Study Bible ( I LOVE it too, Melissa!!)
    Our joys, prayers and thankfulness should not fluctuate with our feelings or circumstances …. this may go against my natural inclinations (um…YES!!)..when we do God’s will we find it easier to be joyful and thankful.

    Lord, thank you for drawing me to your Word. Thank you for Your Word. It is life to me and is precious to me. I will trust and obey!

  5. I posted earlier about how my day was starting. Now, after reciting, praying, and really digging into this, I am now singing happy songs, dancing a jig, and praising Jesus even though our circumstances today were grim. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  6. Have been sick, so I am a little behind…but today’s 1Thessalonians 5: 12-28 really spoke to me. “Live at peace with everyone, Make sure nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always try to be kind to each other…” I try very hard to live by these standards. I have loved the Lord since I was 7- when a group of college kids came to my town, and presented the gospel to my neighborhood (and that was quite a feat..we lived in the boonies) But they changed my life that day – planted a seed that would bring me to a place of excepting Jesus into my heart just a short time later…now 35+years later…after going through a divorce, and a time where my ex – was in prison…I am still learning that these verses are so so true! We must not pay back wrong for wrong – WE MUST Show the Love of Christ. Thank you so much for the reminder…And for your love of our Lord! God Bless You.

  7. debbie pemberton says:

    Debbie, be joyful at all times
    Debbie, never stop praying
    Debbie, be thankful in all and everything no mayyer what the circumstances
    Debbie, this is Gods’ will for me at this time
    Debbie, belongs to Jesus Christ Thank you Lord
    I do love this class or study and ya’ll very much

  8. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-19 was such a comfort to me today as I was reading. It has been a rough week for our family as my Aunt, Uncle, and cousin lost their business on nearly 25 years to fire. Their whole lives where there in one building and in less than an hour, everything was gone. This reminded me that God has a bigger plan for each of us. It doesn’t matter what we have but who we have in our lives. Possessions can be replaced, a building rebuilt, but lives cannot be replaced. Now I know that I am thankful, always, for God sparing the lives of those I love. God can overcome anything and letting go of what we think is important is just one small step into allowing God to have control. This study has been a real eye-opener! God’s richest blessings!

  9. Mary G. (OBS Group Leader) says:

    Just have to say this was good for me today! A couple of times when I was talking to my mom about school I stopped and said, “nope, I’m not going to talk about that, it’s not stealing my joy, and I’m gonna leave it at that.” She just giggled and said, “that’s right!”

    Wrote this out on two cards for my daughter and I to refer back to whenever we need it!

  10. I was positive all day. Was cheerful with my children, did not fret over things that could be put on hold and used gentleness while redirecting my children. They were thrilled with a sleek peek at the new me and I love it. I think my little girl that is so much like me was thrilled. Prayers tonight with my children were great, and time on Skype with my hubby was without any complaining. :-) it was a joyful day in the Lord.

    • Mary G. (OBS Group Leader) says:

      And a nice visit with a friend right? My day was more joyful than normal too! Not sure if it was the day off from school or not, but I’ll take it! Thankful for this study, our group, and Proverbs 31 Ministries! Thanks for sharing Dawn!

      Good day! :)

  11. Sherri Chatman says:

    Boy did I need this reflection verse today!
    I made a the effort to smile, be joyful & said outloud a LIST of things that I was grateful for despite the way that I was feeling about my circumstances.
    And of course, I was having an ongoing prayerful conversation with God ALL day!

  12. Tabitha Jones says:

    Once I got into this study today i didn’t want to move. These verses have been on my mind all day. God is really working in me the past few weeks and it’s been amazing. I had some things happen in my childhood that God is carrying me back through and I know it is to help me realize what has went on and to let go. I will share my story before the study ends I just feel I need a little more time.

  13. Martha be joyful always; Martha pray continually; Martha give thanks in ALL circumstances, Martha for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. Martha you belong to Christ Jesus!! Glory, I belong to Christ Jesus! Ta DA (Thank You Father). What a blessing this challenge is to me!! In the passage, v14 really spoke to my heart: “And we urge you brothers, warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient w/ everyone (not just my siblings in Christ).” Abba help me to be patient with everyone just as You are so patient with me so that You are glorified. In Jesus’ name. Amen

  14. The reminder from the scripture to always be joyful and in prayer no matter the circumstances is powerful; and to know this is God’s will for us is simple yet boy do I forget it most of the time. It’s so easy to be joyful when all is going well, but to remember to be joyful, thankful and prayerful in tough circumstances isn’t quite so easy. Even in times of trouble we are blessed if we take a step back and look at all God has done for us. He promises his loving kindness always. He is with us, has a plan for us and He will triumph over whatever troubles we have. That’s good news to remember daily. This verse has helped bring that home for me today.

  15. I love this verse from 1 Thessalonians. The ‘pray continually’ part really has stuck out to me. Lately, this book has really helped me to Let It Go. My husband has been unemployed since October, we had our third child in November, and life has been crazy. This book has helped me regain focus on what matters. Normally, I would have been fretting, worrying, and complaining the past few months. But this book has helped me to put my faith in God, and support my husband, not tear him down. My husband started a new job today! While it’s not exactly in the same field or what we are used to, we are hoping to enjoy this new path in life and be used by God right where he put us. Now, I am focusing this verse on my six year old, who can’t seem to be quiet at school. Since I am not there with her everyday, and all of her privileges have been revoked, I am at my wit’s end. But then I read this verse and realized that I haven’t been praying about this situation. So, I am seeking God with a purpose the next 48 hours, for my daughter and her motor mouth! :)

  16. my take away of the day is how awesome the Word of God is.. in just those few scriptures, i can completely know who i am, who called me, how set apart He makes m e, to remember those superior to me in the faith, that i should be ever in communication with Him in prayer, to do only good to those around me, stay away from all profane things,not to ever quench His Holy Spirit… and so many more… my memory aint that good/lol,<3 melissa taylor, you are so awesome,,, i just started my 48 hour challenge,, and i am joyful, being mindful to pray often and being thankful.. BECAUSE I KNOW GODS WILL FOR ME… thank you for what you do lady…great are your rewards in the heavenlies…love.. cant wait to BLOG HOP TOMORROW….

  17. While I’m a little bit behind on the book reading (my daughter has been waking up before the sun all week throwing off my usual quiet time), I did still read the blog post and complete the Bible reading and I just wanted to say that today was one of the best days I’ve had in a really long time! Even my husband, who knows nothing of todays assignment, noticed a difference and commented about it at dinner :-)

  18. We are all at different points in our life. I feel as if I am through the storm and seeing how God brought and continues to bring me through it. Teenagers can be such a challenge and when my daughter at 14 years old was struggling and needed help, I crumbled wondering what I did wrong and how did this happen. Through counseling, prayer and time she is preparing to go off to college now at 18 years old. I had to give up control and LET GO of things and it wasn’t easy, learning how to balance it out and now reaping rewards/feeling joy and being so grateful.

  19. oops forgot to add, this study is such a blessing to me! Thank you so much for your time and commitment to this OBS! Love it!

  20. My take away for this chapter is: “It’s God’s job to determine our circumstances. It’s our job to cooperate with him in the midst of them, adjusting and realigning our attitudes with the truth of scripture.” (Pg. 156). In addition to: “don’t allow your mind to burn up time dwelling on the cant’s of your circumstances. If you can’t change something, drop it and move on.” I really need to take hold of this and let things out of my control go. When I don’t like the results of something, I hold onto it and dwell on it and try to find ways to change it. A great example of this would be when there’s a disagreement with someone in the family and they won’t allow me to speak my peace or try to work it out and resolve it. I can never let it go. Things like that eat away at me terribly. I’ve always needed things to be resolved to my liking to feel closure…but I can’t control them and their choses so I really need to learn to let it go.

  21. Krista Doss says:

    Just finished ch.8. This chapter has spoke to me the most so far. This is what I have battled with for the last two years. I have slowly learned to do better but this chapter grabbed me and made sense!!! I pray that I can WILLINGLY snuggle up with God and let Him lead me.

  22. Karlene Campbell says:

    Yesterday was one of those days where my plans were changed. I had a church council meeting at 630pm but while eating dinner my 12 yr old tells me his ear has been bothering him. I asked bothering how?? He said he had a sharp pain and was having a hard time hearing. So…I look up what time the express care closed and then contacted my Pastor to inform him of my dilemma. Express care closed at 730 so I had time and my Pastor told me not to worry about the meeting. I text him my notes that I had to present and then off we went to the express care. I was proud of myself because I really didn’t allow the change in my plans to upset me. I was thankful the crisis was averted and in a calming manner. I felt great about how I had reacted to the situation. I really like this reflection verse.

  23. Tammy H. says:

    I love the title of this chapter. It decribes my life to a tee. It seems to be outside sources that always seem to throw a kink in things. With my past job ( a special ed paraprofessional) and a substitute teacher, I’ve learned to fly by the seat of my pants. I did love the Esther story. It’s one of my favoriets in the bible. I did the Beth Moore study on it and that made it one of my favorites. She’s so brave and such an inspiration to women. And again, learning to journal was the best part of this chapter and yesterday’s lesson. I love it!!

  24. My takeaway for today is 1 Thessalonians 5:24 The one who calls you is faithful and HE WILL DO IT!

  25. This will definitely be a difficult challenge for me, but an awesome one still. I have gotten reached a point in my life where I’m really not taking care of myself the way I need to be as a child of Christ. I’m staying up too late with the excuse that it is the only time I ever get to myself, but I’m tired throughout the day, which truly robs me of joy. I feel like I am being too hard on myself in my efforts to be the best mom, the best wife, keep up with the chores of the house, remember all the things to do and steps to take with Caroline’s new asthma regime, and now she has pink eye! So keeping up with disinfecting, washing, chasing after her with hand sanitizer and wipes, washing towels and sheets, making mental notes of what toys she’s playing with so I know what ones to bleach wash after she starts treatment tomorrow, making sure she gets into the doctor via my mother in law because I have to work, trying to keep my husband and I infection free. Does it end? I’ve gotten off track spiritually, which will be my first place to make changes today and this challenge is an awesome starting point. Pray pray pray!