Wednesday, November 24, 2021

Mid-Week Message - A Day of Thanksgiving

 "Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good!  His faithful love endures forever."  Psalm 136:1  (NLT)

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving day in America.  It is the day that we carry on the tradition begun by the Pilgrims in 1621.  On that day, they gathered together with their new native American friends to thank the Lord for taking care of, providing for and protecting them.  

As I write this morning, I can't help but wonder what was on their minds that day.  Those that had survived had seen days of near starvation and truly understood that the food that was before them was directly from God's hand.  As they worshipped Him, they did so with hearts that were filled with gratitude for His faithfulness and goodness.  

Four hundred years later, as we shop for our turkeys, potatoes, cranberries and all the other edibles that will be upon our tables, are we remembering that our provision still comes from the Lord?  Or do we grumble because of the inflated prices and stress as we wonder how we are going to get all the tasks accomplished by the time our family and guests arrive?  Is our focus on giving thanks or on parades and football games?  Does this day, specifically set aside as a day of praise, mean to us what it should?  

We have been through a lot in the last couple of years.  Grief and uncertainty have surrounded us and we have found ourselves asking a lot of questions about what might come next.  

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

It doesn't say to be thankful FOR all circumstances.  It is hard to be thankful when we are standing at the grave of a loved one, or when we worry how we are going to pay our rent or mortgage.  Yet, each breath we take is a gift from above.  Each morsel of food we swallow is provided by His hand, even if we have had to work hard for the money to pay for it.  And we can be thankful for each second we had with those who have passed.  

If we are blessed to take our place at a heavily laden table tomorrow, or if we only have enough for one meal, let's turn our thoughts toward acknowledging where each item originated.  Our loving Creator has chosen to bless us with what it takes to sustain our lives. 

 As we trust Him to supply what we need in the future, we can praise Him for the moment we are in. No matter where we find ourselves, or what circumstances we find ourselves in, we can, as Paul did, learn to be content.  And as the Pilgrims did, we can be thankful for His hand of protection and His provision.  God bless.  

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