Thanksgiving comes to us out of the prehistoric dimness, universal to all ages and all faiths. At whatever straws we must grasp, there is always a time for gratitude and new beginnings. ~J. Robert Moskin
Parades. Family. Turkey. Feast. Football.
These are the traditions that most Americans partake of on that fourth Thursday of November every year. The interesting history of Thanksgiving, shrouded in a little bit of controversy, started in Europe with the Puritans or even before that with the Greeks. For centuries, there has been a Feast or Festival of Thanksgiving to God or gods prior to Pres. Lincoln making it an official holiday in America. But, word is, today Thanksgiving has lost a lot of it religious aspects while maintaining the aforementioned traditions. While I do not agree in buying Christmas decorations on All Saints Day, I do find myself preparing for this special time of the year and holiday season starting with Thanksgiving, moving into Advent, and celebrating Jesus Christ and Christmas. As Christians, we must be careful to remember to give thanks to God on Thanksgiving and everyday. Meister Eckhart, a German theologian, may have said it best when he said, “If the only prayer you said in your whole life was ‘thank you,’ that would suffice.” So this month, let us work on these three things:
- Remember Him: Acknowledge God and recognize that His hand is in everything.
- Give Thanksgiving in Prayer: You should start off your prayer, not with what you want or need but with thanks on your heart and lips for all God has done in, through, and around your life.
- Have an Attitude of Gratitude: In your service to others and in their service to you. Be mindful to say thank you and show your appreciation. To your pastor(s). To the sales clerk. To the stranger who reached to get that item off the top shelf when he saw you struggling. To your family members including friends, the ones we often take for granted.
This month’s scripture comes from 1 Chronicles 29:10b-14 (NKJV).
“ Blessed are You, LORD God of Israel, our Father, forever and ever.
11 Yours, O LORD, is the greatness,
The power and the glory,
The victory and the majesty;
For all that is in heaven and in earth is Yours;
Yours is the kingdom, O LORD,
And You are exalted as head over all.
12 Both riches and honor come from You,
And You reign over all.
In Your hand is power and might;
In Your hand it is to make great
And to give strength to all.
13 “Now therefore, our God,
We thank You
And praise Your glorious name.
14 But who am I, and who are my people,
That we should be able to offer so willingly as this?
For all things come from You,
And of Your own we have given You.