A word from our pastor…
As Christians, our way of living is rooted in thanksgiving! All that we have and all that we are is a gift from God, and we express our gratitude by offering our thanks and praise, our gratitude, back to God. Thoughts of thanksgiving permeate our minds and overflow into our hearts as we move into November in anticipation of Thanksgiving Day. Thanksgiving is, however, more than a holiday which falls on the fourth Thursday of November for Christians; it is a way of life.
Repeatedly throughout Scripture we are encouraged to give thanks to the Lord. In one instance the apostle Paul even writes, “Give thanks in all circumstances” (I Thessalonians 5:18). It’s not necessarily because we’re supposed to be happy about all of our circumstances. What Paul’s getting at runs far deeper than that. Paul recognizes that every breath we take depends upon the very breath of God, the Spirit of God; therefore, thanksgiving for the gift of life itself is in order, no matter what our circumstances might be on any given day.
While we may cry out to the Lord, asking for changes in our life situation or our circumstances, we can, at the same time, give thanks to God for His presence in our lives. We can give thanks to God for His faithfulness in our lives. We give thanks to God for His grace in our lives. We can also give thanks to God for all of these things in our congregation, our community, and in the world as well.
God Cares deeply about every aspect of His creation, including the ones made in God’s own image- us human beings. Remembering that God cares deeply about us and that He wants to be in a relationship with us, we can turn to God in prayer. As we do, some important words to keep in mind are those of Paul again. Recall these words, “do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God” (Philippians 4:6) and, “Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with thanksgiving” (Colossians 4:2). In these verses are key components for our life in Christ—giving thanks, expressing gratitude, living prayerfully.
As our Thanksgiving holiday approaches, reflect upon the multitude of wonders and gifts and blessings for which you give thanks to God. Reflect upon how you might give thanks to those with whom you share life in Christ. Reflect upon what it means to offer yourself, your whole self, to God—your life and your labor; your finances; your thoughts, insights, and emotions; your hopes, dreams, and aspirations; and also your prayers. Expressing thankfulness has a way of generating high energy, excitement and inspiration. Let nothing hold you back from tapping into it and giving God all the Glory.
Yours in Christ,