Thanksgiving 2019 is over, but as the weekend nears its end and December begins, I’ll carry with me the words of the Lord from scripture that were impressed upon me this week. As Thanksgiving day approached and as I began to think about its meaning, and as I thought about that first Thanksgiving feast shared by the English colonists and the Wampanoags almost 400 years ago in 1621, the simplicity of the holiday came into focus. Thankfulness — an important, but very simple act. The realization that blessings and provisions from God abound around each of us every day. The understanding that even though we may work hard to provide for ourselves and our families for our basic needs, those needs are ultimately met by God. Every blessing we possess and enjoy is a gift from God. 🎵 Praise God, from Whom all blessings flow; Praise Him, all creatures here below; Praise Him above, ye heavenly host; Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. 🎵
But how can we, and should we, show thankfulness to God for His many blessings? That question led me to narrow down to a few basic directives given in the scriptures. Thankfulness is not just in saying the 2 simple words “thank you,” but it’s in living out a life of thankfulness each and every day. It’s in being sincerely grateful to God for His bountiful blessings, not just on this holiday, but every day that He gives us breath. If the realization occurs that our greatest blessing is God Himself, the desire to express sincere thankfulness naturally follows. Sincere thankfulness requires action. For this Thanksgiving week, I chose a simple biblical directive on which to reflect for each day of the week.
Sunday: Worship God.
[WORSHIP = an act of reverence or homage]
Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the LORD, our Maker! (Psalm 95:6)
Monday: Serve God.
[SERVE = to work for, to labor in behalf of]
Only fear the LORD and serve him faithfully with all your heart. For consider what great things He has done for you. (1 Samuel 12:24)
Tuesday: Obey God.
[OBEY = to comply with, to follow commands of, to submit to authority of]
You shall walk after the LORD your God and fear him and keep his commandments and obey his voice, and you shall serve him and hold fast to him. (Deuteronomy 13:4)
Wednesday: Love God.
[PHILOTHEIA = love for God….associated with worship and devotion towards God]
And he [Jesus] said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. (Matthew 22: 37-38)
Thursday: Thank God.
[THANK = to express gratitude to]
I will give thanks to the LORD with my whole heart; I will recount all of your wonderful deeds. (Psalm 9:1)
Friday: Praise God.
[PRAISE = to extol in words or song; to magnify; to glorify on account of perfections or excellent works]
Through Him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge His name. (Hebrews 13:15)
Saturday: Follow God.
[FOLLOW = act according to the lead or example of]
You shall follow the LORD your God and fear Him; and you shall keep His commandments, listen to His voice, serve Him, and cling to Him. (Deuteronomy 13:4)