Happy Thanksgiving friends! I know this Thanksgiving looks different for many people. This whole year has been different for all of us. Whether you were dealing with school closings, unemployment, isolation from friends and family, or illness, we’ve all been affected by this pandemic in one way or another. I can understand why someone may find it difficult to give thanks today; but let’s look at what the scripture says.
This is my favorite verse concerning giving thanks;
Philippians 4:6 – Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.”
In this verse Paul is saying to be anxious for nothing! Nothing… that’s a pretty hard thing to do! But Paul goes on to explain how we can achieve that in the second part of the verse. We are to go to God in prayer with our needs. He also indicates we should go to him in prayer with Thanksgiving.
“by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving”
I think the thanksgiving part of that verse is often overlooked. Yet it’s a very intricate part of the direction he’s giving us. He’s telling us how we should approach God in our prayers, with our hearts and minds giving God thanks.
What is thanksgiving? It’s gratitude, an acknowledgment of the good things, the gifts God has given us. We know all good things come from him!
Even when our circumstances are dire, even when we are completely heartbroken, we still have the ability to give thanks. We as Christians, if we have nothing else to give thanks for on this earth, we still have the GREATEST thing to be thankful for! The promise of eternal life! We have Heaven waiting for us! And, I would say for most people, we have many earthly gifts to be thankful for as well!
If you read on to the next verse Paul tells us what will happen when we do what he says;
“And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
It doesn’t say that we will always get the answer we want, but we will receive peace! We will lose that anxiety in our hearts and minds.
Just think about Paul writing this, he was in prison facing death, yet he was writing to the church in Philippi to encourage them!
I want to always strive for that peace. I would encourage us all to do as Paul says when we are anxious or feeling less than thankful. Go to God in prayer, make supplication for what we need, and acknowledge with a grateful heart the gifts he has given us! If we do those things I know God will grant his peace that passeth all understanding!
Happy Thanksgiving to you all! I pray that we all are able to see the wonderful gifts God has given us today and all days!