November 22, 2022 – Reflections on “Give Thanks to the Lord!”

        Oh, give thanks to the Lord; call upon His name; make known His deeds among the peoples!  Sing to Him, sing praises to Him; tell of all His wondrous works! Glory in His holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice! I Chronicles 16:8-10.

         Thanksgiving Day comes just once a year, and yet Praising God is every moment and reaches back in time. I Chronicles 16 contains King David’s song of Praise to the One who created us all and purposed a meaning for our lives. I cry out to God Most High, to our God who fulfills His purpose for me.  Psalm 57:2.

         The way to greet each new day sets our hearts and minds on the Lord. This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.  Psalm 118:24.

         During Family Thanksgivings, we seemed to grow closer together. Then, as families separate, our prayers for them grow more intense, and I am reminded of our self-centeredness in our prayers. One Bible Study I remember, our leader asked for prayer requests. There were many. Then our leader asked for praises for things we are thankful for. An awkward stillness came over us. Finally, one lady told us about sitting on her front porch reading the Bible, while the Honeysuckle bush wafted its fragrance near her. That was her praise. She experienced a Honeysuckle Day of Praise and Blessing.

         One family, I know, shared the things they were thankful for. Prayer is often a time to ask God for things. Jesus taught His disciples to begin prayer with Praise and acknowledgement of who God IS. Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Matthew 6:9. Not our will, but His will be done.

         There are many things to be thankful for, such as each day. Our salvation through Jesus Christ is a gift. Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life. John 6:47-48.

         Sometimes our attitude of being thankful is difficult and hard to maintain when we see others living a good life. We want contentment. But godliness with contentment is great gain, for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. I Timothy 6:6-7.

         When things are difficult, this question arises, “What are you teaching me, God?” And then I read James 1:2-4, Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith

produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

         Thankful for God’s Faithfulness, and Wisdom, Love and all that Love is, plus Steadfastness, is an everyday prayer and praise because they affect us every moment we live. Your steadfast love, O Lord, extends to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds. Psalm 36:5. I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you. Psalm 32:8. (wisdom). Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends. I Corinthians 13:4-8.

         Be thankful for the instant connection that never fails in our prayers to God. Do not be anxious about anything, 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 your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7.

         Where can we find Peace? It is not made through governments and treaties. Jesus brought lasting Peace. Peace, I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives, do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. John 14:27.

         We praise God that through Christ, we can be transformed into a new creation. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation. 2 Corinthians 5:17-18.

         In Exodus 14, we find the Children of Israel with the Red Sea before them, and the Egyptian warriors coming after them. Moses had faith in God. And Moses said to the people, “Fear not, stand firm, and see the salvation of the Lord, which he will work for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall never see again. The Lord will fight for you, and you have only to be silent.” Exodus 14:13-14. God made a way for them to cross the Red Sea on dry land.

         God makes a way for all of us to trust and obey, and always be thankful to Him… Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. Hebrews 13:8. It is good to give thanks to the Lord, to sing praises to your name, O Most High! Psalm 92:1.