Wednesday, November 24, 2021

           There is an old expression that says, “don’t just stand there, do something.”  And certain times demand action.  Certain occasions call for responses.  Thanksgiving is one of those occasions.  We are not to approach the fourth Thursday of November in a passive and casual way.  It is not like any other day.  It is not an ordinary day.  It is not a day to be taken lightly.  It is Thanksgiving Day.  God’s people, followers of Christ, should lead the march of Thanksgiving.  We should set an inspiring tone and example for others to follow.  Psalm 116:17-18 says to us, “I will sacrifice a thank offering to you and call on the name of the Lord.  I will fulfill my vows to the Lord in the presence of all his people.”  These two verses are a call to action.  First, on two occasions, the Bible says “I will.”  The idea is a decision has been made.  Actions are about to be set in motion.  We do not leave Thanksgiving to chance.  We make a decision to be grateful.  Second, we read about offerings and vows.  Thanking God in a tangible way is a good thing.  You might want to give an offering of gratitude to our church.  You might make something for another person who has blessed you.  You might send an encouraging text or letter to a person whose life has touched yours in some way.  Third, we call on the name of the Lord to express our gratitude to Him.  We can call on Him in prayer, praise or worship.  We can name what He has done for us.
            The best way to observe Thanksgiving is by thanksliving.  That is not a spelling error or typo.  It is not an attempt to be sly or slick.  The best way to reveal or reflect gratitude is always by how we choose to live.  We incorporate gratitude into our lives.  A year of gratitude is incredibly better than just one day every November.  Grateful people become more gracious people.  Grateful people become more generous people.  And grateful people become more grounded.  We know the Source of our blessings and gifts.  It is God alone who provides for us.  As the Bible says, “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows” (James 1:17). 
            We never take our refuge in the changing news of the ever-changing world.  We take our refuge in the Lord.  In the midst of challenging times, like these, we are comforted that God never changes.  God never goes away.  God never forsakes us.  The middle verse of the Bible is Psalm 118:8. This verse promises us that, “it is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in man.”  Isn’t it wonderful that we can go boldly before His throne of grace for anything and everything we need in life and know without a doubt that He will abundantly provide for us?  As we have journeyed our way to this year’s Thanksgiving, we have been able to ponder the goodness of God and the grace that He offers us.  Take the direction of Scripture seriously, be thankful in a real and tangible way.  Add actions to your words.  Take some steps to be clear that you are a thankful and grateful follower of Christ.  Have a great Wednesday!  

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