It’s Monday morning and the beginning of a week of Thanksgiving but we count the gifts always here, trying to make a life of thanks-living. Pastor teaches yesterday on the value of a grateful heart and that God’s grace is at the center of all giving thanks. And he teaches how an ungrateful heart has forgotten the gospel and that the place in our heart created for thanksgiving will be filled with something dark, sinister, if it is not overflowing with praise to the One who gave all. And I think of my Savior, how He took the bread, broke it, and gave thanks, knowing it was His body that would be broken, His blood that would be poured out. And even still, He gave thanks. How can I not give thanks in the midst of my light and momentary struggles? How can I not praise Him in the midst of our daily storms?
Some days it is hard. The flesh cries foul at the seeming injustice of it all and the heart weighs heavy, weary that things will never change. What if they never do? Can I continue on in praise to Him? Can I continue to seek His will, to be molded into the image of the Son, even if my circumstances never change? The only other option is bitterness. I can praise or I can resent. I can give thanks or I can complain. My heart can continue to be made softer still or my heart can grow hard within me.
I do not want to be what the world tells me I deserve to be. I want to love the unlovable. I want to return kindness in the face of hatred. I want to bow my head in prayer when the flesh cries out to scream.
The practice of listing the gifts, intentional thanks, opens my eyes to what He gives. If everything is from His hand, I can trust Him that it is worth giving thanks for. And so I look, I watch for those God-gifts. Little things. Big things. All things.
And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
1445. seventy degrees in mid-November
1446. decorations up
1447. tired ears that mean a fun day with my girls
1448. timely messages on Sunday morning
1449. a week of focused thanks