Once again that favorite American holiday is upon us! Thanksgiving! I can almost smell the baking pies and roasting turkey now. Can you? It’s an iconic day that holds special things for nearly everyone. Folks who like parades wait all year for Macy’s extravaganza. I don’t know anyone who isn’t excited to eat too much and then there’s football for that time when you can’t move anyhow. And we certainly can’t forget that Black Friday starts on Thursday now…. or sooner.
In school we were all taught about the pilgrims and the first Thanksgiving. Some families still talk about the actual traditions surrounding this day. But what if we look further back than that?
In nearly every culture there are harvest festivals of some type, offering thanks for the bounty of the year. In Christianity, we are taught to be thankful for more than just a bountiful harvest. Because Jesus came into the world and paid for our sins, we believe that following His teachings will give us eternal life. THAT is a pretty big thing to be thankful for! He doesn’t promise that our lives here on earth will be perfectly smooth with no problems, but He does tell us that God knows exactly what’s going on & that He hears us when we call out to Him.
The apostle Paul tells us in Philippians 4:6-7 that we should worry about nothing. Instead we should pray “with thanksgiving” and trust in the Lord. He repeats this message in his first letter to the Thessalonians (1Thes 5:16), the Colossians (Col 4:2), and in his letter to the Ephesians (Eph5:20). This is a pretty serious teaching to be repeated so many times!
Praying with thanksgiving is simply trusting that God not only hears us, but that He cares and responds when we ask for His help or blessing, according to His will. We serve a God who hears us! We serve a God who responds to us! Giving thanks in our hearts and with our mouths before our prayers are answered acknowledges His relationship with us.
If you’d like to hear more about this, we encourage you to join us tomorrow morning at 10:50 a.m. as Pastor Ann brings us the fullness of His message! We look forward to seeing y’all then.