“Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus!” Thanksgiving isn’t a once-a-year celebration for anyone who calls themselves a disciple of the Lord Jesus. It should be a daily reality! I can almost hear someone somewhere saying, “Glen, you have no idea about what I have been through and what I am currently facing? You are “correct” – I don’t!
However, I do know a little about the man who penned the above words from 1 Thessalonians chapter 5! He was separated from friends, unjustly accused, brutally treated—if ever a person had a right to complain, it was this man, languishing almost forgotten in a harsh Roman prison. But instead of complaints, his lips rang with words of praise and thanksgiving! The man Paul — also wrote “Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Ephesians 5:19-20)
One of my recent messages was about the 10 lepers that Jesus cleansed in Luke 17. If you remember only one came back to thank Jesus – he was a “returner!” The other 9 never returned, their minds perhaps preoccupied only with themselves, gripped with a spirit of ingratitude? Jesus, asked “But the 9, where are they?”
One of the Bible’s criticisms against humanity is that “although they knew God, they neither glorified Him as God nor gave thanks to Him” (Romans 1:21). An ungrateful heart is a heart that is apathetic toward God and indifferent to His mercy, grace and tender compassion.
We have been studying Galatians which we have entitled, “Freedom – The Liberating Grace of God.” Where would we be without God’s grace? Let’s be thankful afresh this Thanksgiving for:
- The material blessings that He has lavished upon us – food, clothing, shelter etc.
- The spiritual blessings of salvation, justification, adoption, regeneration, redemption that we have been reminded of during our journey through Galatians
- The blessed people He has put into our lives to love and encourage us
- The blessed Holy Spirit who dwells within
- The blessed Word of God so that we may know His will and live it out
- The blessed hope of the return of our great God and Savior Christ Jesus
It has been said that a person who has forgotten how to be thankful has fallen asleep in life! May our eyes be wide open this Sunday to the supernatural work of the Holy Spirit as we live “fruitful and thankful” lives to His glory. Looking forward to seeing you and please meditate on Gal.5:16-26!
“O give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; For His lovingkindness is everlasting”
“Oh give thanks to the Lord, call upon His name; Make known His deeds among the peoples”
“I will give thanks to You, O Lord my God, with all my heart, And will glorify Your name forever”
P.S. Perhaps you are aware that Zimbabwe is amid a political crisis! Please keep the nation in your prayers!