Have you ever felt sorry for a holiday? I doubt Labor Day or Presidents Day is high on your list of special days that require much attention or planning. There are no cards or gifts exchanged on those days, and they largely go unnoticed. Unfortunately, it seems that over the last few years Thanksgiving Day is on the list of special days that have lost their luster.
For many commercial purposes, our society jumps from the end of summer all the way to Christmas. By doing so, we bypass some of the most beautiful days of the year and even more importantly, a period of being intentionally thankful for our many blessings.
The spirit and attitude of Thanksgiving should be a natural extension of every Christian. In Psalm 65, David gives us a glimpse of the many reasons to give God the thanks He deserves. With the countless number of blessings God has bestowed upon us, an attitude of gratitude should be evident in all areas of our lives.
If we were to list the many reasons we have to be thankful to God, most of us would have the forgiveness He provides near the top of the list. Without forgiveness, there is no hope for salvation or the reconciliation we desperately need. Gratitude and praise should be synonymous.
We consider a small child to be rude when he or she refuses to express thanks when given something. Why should we as adults expect any less from one another?
Forgiveness reveals Christ’s love for us and is a gift we could never repay or purchase for ourselves. His forgiveness is so wonderful that it not only removes the punishment from our sins, but it also opens the door to blessings we would not otherwise experience.
In our world, many seek to be powerful and well known. When some think of greatness they think of impact, visibility and power.
The Heavenly Father can choose to express His power in any way He chooses, but think about the strength He displays in the quiet moments. A sunrise, the rotation of the planets in the galaxy and other occurrences are examples of true power and greatness that are only made possible by the invisible hand of God.
His power is unmatched, without equal. God can silence the noise of the threats from this world’s so-called powerful ones. We can be grateful our faith is in the greatest One of all.
Thanksgiving Day is an interesting thing to consider. We spend a large portion of the day with family and friends while gathering around large portions of food and giving thanks to God for all our many blessings. Then, a few hours later, our nation spends billions of dollars shopping for more stuff in search of happiness or contentment. We must not lose sight of God’s provision in the holiday season ahead. God has met each one of our needs daily.
His benevolence is not limited to our borders or culture. We are a blessed people due to the grace of God. In years gone by, our churches would sing “Count Your Many Blessings.” This Thanksgiving, why don’t we attempt that very thing?
This lesson was written by Bobby McKay, pastor of New Liberty Baptist Church in Morton, Mississippi, and originally published by The Baptist Paper. This study is based on the Bible Studies for Life curriculum from Lifeway Christian Resources.