It’s been a week of thankfulness – recognizing God as the Giver of All Good Gifts, getting to know Him more and more through the gift of His Word, gratefully accepting the gift of His Son, Jesus, and being thankful even in the midst of a difficult time.
Now for the great yearly challenge – how do we continue the thankful thinking all year?
Perhaps the following quote from J.F. Kennedy will provide some help. “As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” Show your gratitude, not just by saying, “Thank You” to God and to others, but by living a thankful lifestyle. If we are deeply thankful for the blessings that have been given we will naturally want to share those blessings with others. Opening our home to others, tithing to our church, caring for those experiencing difficult trials, and sharing with those who have less material blessings are all ways we can express our gratitude for what has been given. We can reflect His goodness. He has given to us. We will give to others.
And, most importantly, when we are truly grateful for what God has done, for who He is and for His plan of salvation, for the gift of His Son and the forgiveness given, for the Kingdom hope – we will want to share it with others. Inviting a friend to church, sharing a devotion with the family, praying with someone struggling, telling what God has done for you, giving a Bible, donating to missions (*), posting Scripture on your social media, home, office and locker walls, and the list goes on.
Read over Romans 10. The world is full of people who do not know the gifts they could be receiving right now – who have not heard the message. It is our job to, “Sacrifice thank offerings and tell of His works with songs of joy.” (Psalm 107:22). What thank offerings will you present? How will you tell of His works? We are not responsible for other’s reaction to the saving message. Just as Moses and Isaiah met up with resistance and obstinate people – so will we when we exercise our beautiful feet (Romans 10:15).
Look over your thankful list (go ahead and write it down if you haven’t already this week). Prayerfully consider how you can show your appreciation for each gift. How can you pass along the joy you’ve received? How will you reflect His goodness?
(*) Be watching for the soon-to-be released Lord’s Harvest International Gift Catalog for some great ideas on how to help provide for needs on our missionary fronts (Bibles, church buildings or rent, a pastor’s transportation, an orphan’s or widow’s care, seed & fertilizer, etc….)