We were in the kitchen last week as my daughter's and I were discussing the Thanksgiving menu for 2009! I said, "Girls, we are discussing this already and it is still a month away?" "Yes!" They shouted with excitement!
Listening to their excitement about their favorite dishes that they wanted to prepare, it began to stir my emotions inside of me! I am not sure what has perspired in your lives since Thanksgiving of last year with still having a heart and spirit of being thankful, but I know that it got me thinking!
Have you sat down recently and began thinking what exactly does it mean to be thankful in all things? The girls again reminded me of that during our Woman's Bible Study this past week! Does it not just get you when the younger ones are the ones reminding you? UGH!
Philippians 4:6-7 says, "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus."
We began discussing how this verse says, in everything to be thankful and then you let your requests be made known! Ouch! Does that mean you have to be thankful before coming to Him with your requests? YES! I don't know about you guys, but that can be pretty difficult at times.
So, again we continued with our Bible study and after we finished I could not get "with thanksgiving," out of my mind. Upon recalling some of my stories since last Thanksgiving, I was thinking this could have given me a heart attack!
For instance recently with one of our newly "adopted" daughters who came out of sexual abuse and incest for 23 years had an opportunity to be interviewed and share her story. One thing that struck me was her thankful attitude towards the Lord as He had protected her all those years! She was thankful that she was now in a family she could count as her own. Somewhere she was safe and loved! She brought me to tears and it was a sweet reminder to me that in every circumstance there is thanksgiving! Wow!
Is this a difficult proposition to be thankful in all these matters before even coming with our requests before the Lord? YES! Can it be done? YES!
"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." Philippians 4:13
Listen to this from Acts 16:22-25: "Then the multitude rose up together against them; and the magistrates tore off their clothes and commanded them to be beaten with rods. And when they had laid many stripes on them, they threw them into prison, commanding the jailer to keep them securely. Having received such a charge, he put them into the inner prison and fastened their feet in the stocks. But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God and the prisoners were listening to them." If that does not bring me to conviction!
So this is what I simply gathered. To be thankful in all things! This Thanksgiving, when you gather with your family and friends, remember those that came before us and their difficult times under their circumstances and conditions. Their thankful attitudes and hearts should encourage us to come with thanksgiving before bringing our petitions to Him!
Close and Personal:
What can you be thankful for in the midst of unbearable circumstances?
"Thanksgiving." Should it be only celebrated in November?
Can you think of a time this year that now looking back you realize you should have been thankful?
My dearest Savior,
I want to take time to tell you thank you for those moments this past year that seemed so gloomy and difficult! Those times now looking back you were using for your Glory and Honor yet I saw them so hard to endure! Father I love you and I thank you for entrusting those difficult times to us and our family! May this Thanksgiving we remember that it does not end in November but rather last all year round! I praise you now and forever!