Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Mid-Week Message - The Praise of Thanksgiving

"Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you who belong to Christ Jesus."  1 Thessalonians 5:18

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving Day in America.  Begun by the Pilgrims, it continues to be a tradition to set aside a day to think of all the things that we are grateful for.  At least that is the central idea.  Unfortunately, more attention is given to food, football and shopping than to all the blessings we have received.  I find this incredibly sad because it shuts the Lord out.  True gratitude is praise to Him.  

He is the author of life.  Without Him, we would have nothing and be nothing.  Only through the death of Jesus on the cross do we have hope and a promise for the future.  We have freedom from the wages of sin.  We have a purpose designed by Almighty God Himself.  

I love 1 Thessalonians 5:18 because it is a great reminder of the very best reason to give thanks.  It is God's will that we be grateful.  Not just for the good things in our lives, the happy times, that things that make us naturally rejoice, but "in all circumstances."  Why?  Because by being thankful we acknowledge His Lordship and our trust in Him and because we know that Romans 8:28 is factual.  "And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them." And we can have faith in what He says is true. "Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see."  Hebrews 11:1.

When you awake tomorrow and each day of your life, I pray that the first words from your lips will be, "Thank you, Lord."  And as you sit around the table and list what you are thankful for on this day set aside for this purpose, may you be all inclusive in your gratitude so that those around you might see your faith and be encouraged. God bless you!

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