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11/26/20 Thanksgiving Day Grif.Net – Repaying the Lord

11/26/20 Thanksgiving Day Grif.Net – Repaying the Lord

&#8=
220;How can I repay the Lord for all the good he has done for me?” =
(Ps. 116:12)

 

Off=
ering thanksgiving prayers is a spiritual discipline we should embrace. =
At a time in our cultural history when so much is readily available, we =
find ourselves discontent with everything. The need for instant and =
progressively more intense gratification is poisonous to our souls. The =
insatiability of our desires is a disease. Christians should live in =
stark contrast to the never-ending cycle of needing the next =
supposedly-great thing the world has to offer. With eternity laid into =
the hearts of all people (see Ecclesiastes 3:11), we live with a happy =
knowledge of true satisfaction in God. Our friends outside the faith, =
however, are struggling with such an idea.

 

The=
shopping season that masquerades as a holiday season is emblematic of =
the skirmish for our affections. As we move into the Thanksgiving =
season, we should echo the words of the psalmist with our lips and our =
lives. The goodness of the Lord should be easily recounted. Rather than =
demanding what is next on our wish list, we should pause to give thanks =
for what God has done. As individuals and families, it can happen. =
Thanksgiving is to be more than a date on the calendar, a meal on the =
table, or even a perfunctory practice before we dig into the turkey. You =
can make offering thanks into a spiritual discipline that blesses the =
name of God and benefits your own soul.

 

THA=
NKSGIVING IS THE WILL OF GOD

I =
Thessalonians 5:18 reminds us, “Give thanks in everything; for =
this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” It’s a =
portion of how we live as a holy people. A lifestyle of thanksgiving =
sets us apart. Be reminded that holiness isn’t just moral =
excellence. Holiness includes our moral choices but it’s more. As =
holy people, our aim is to follow the will of Christ. Thankfulness =
creates a distinct avenue for spiritual maturity and missional witness. =
You will find yourself growing in grace because you more fully recognize =
its impact on you. Those outside the faith will see God’s grace at =
work because you’ve spoken about it.

 

BE =
GRATEFUL REGARDLESS OF CIRCUMSTANCE

Dan=
iel lived as an exile in a land of abundance. It’s a familiar =
scenario for us. As Christians, we live perpetually in a Babylon that is =
filled with the temptations of excess. So when his faith was challenged, =
Daniel remained true to the Lord. In fact, when his faith in God was =
outlawed, Daniel responded with gratitude: “When Daniel learned =
that the document had been signed, he went into his house. The windows =
in its upstairs room opened toward Jerusalem, and three times a day he =
got down on his knees, prayed, and gave thanks to his God, just as he =
had done before” (Dan. 6:10). No matter what we face, we can =
express our thanksgiving to the God who is there, who is powerful, and =
who is our advocate.

 

OVE=
RFLOW WITH THANKS

Gra=
titude seems to be in short supply in a culture that is never content. =
But we’re taught in Colossians 2:6-7, “So then, just as you =
have received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in him, being =
rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you =
were taught, and overflowing with gratitude.” Walking in our =
salvation should create a flood of thanksgiving.

 

HAV=
E A CONPREHENSIVE OUTLOOK

In =
Ephesians 5:20, Paul wrote, “ . . . giving thanks always for =
everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus =
Christ.” To be thankful for “everything” seems to be =
an overreach. It’s not. All of the good gifts of this life come =
down from our heavenly Father. There isn’t a single thing that you =
have or can accomplish by your own hand. We need to have thankfulness at =
the ready in all circumstances

 

DEV=
OTION LEADS TO GRATITUDE

Kno=
wing that we’re given to selfishness and discontent, it’s a =
work that requires discipline. Colossians 4:2 tells us, “Devote =
yourselves to prayer; stay alert in it with thanksgiving.” You =
must persevere and show vigilance in a life of thankfulness. Otherwise, =
what someone else just bought will become what you feel entitled to have =
too. Devote yourself to a relationship with Christ and the things of =
earth will dull in your sight.

 

On =
this special Thanksgiving Day 2020, take time to be prayerfully thankful =
for more than something than the standard 20 seconds over a table filled =
with food. Create an attitude of thankfulness in your heart that you =
carry throughout life.

 

~~

Dr Bob Griffin =

bob@grif.net =
www.grif.net

"Jesus =
Knows Me, This I Love!"