Thanksgiving Day is approaching fast. At this time of year, many stop and take stock of all that they should be thankful.
There are so many blessing to be enjoyed: health, family, friends, prosperity, jobs — the list could go on. Taking time to give thanks is a good thing, but it should be happening continually, not just on one day. Everyone also should realize to whom the giving of thanks should be addressed. Many seem to think they do everything themselves, without any help. They are forgetting, or may have never considered, the one from whom all blessings flow.
God gives us all of our blessings. Prayers of thanksgiving and trust should flow as a rolling stream from the lips of his children, especially, and from all mankind. Of these blessings, James wrote, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning” (James 1: 17). How many gifts come without a word of thanks being given back to God? What about the physical blessing that are enjoyed? What about the spiritual blessings — church family, teachers of God’s word, those that lead songs? These blessings should never be taken for granted, but often they are.
The failure of men to offer thanks for God’s blessings even happened to our Lord while he was on Earth. Recorded in the 17th chapter of the book of Luke is the account of the 10 lepers: “And as he entered into a certain village, there met him 10 men that were lepers, which stood afar off. And they lifted up their voices, and said, ‘Jesus, master, have mercy on us.’ And when he saw them, he said unto them, ‘Go show yourselves unto the priests.’ And it came to pass that, as they went, they were cleansed. And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back and, with a loud voice, glorified God. And fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan. And Jesus answering said, ‘Were there not 10 cleansed? But where are the nine? There are not found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger.’ And he said unto him, ‘Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole” (Luke 17: 12-19). The one man who returned to thank the Lord was a man the Jewish people looked down on, a person who was worthless. Yet he knew a thank-you was due. Do we stand beside the Samaritan man or with the nine ungrateful?
David wrote, “It is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord and to sing praises unto thy name, O most high” (Psalms 92:1). Of all the servants of God whom we read about in the Bible, David perhaps is the most thankful. His love and adoration for God is seen throughout the Psalms. When one studies about all the trials that David had to endure, the question comes to mind: “How did he ever endure such things?’ The answer is in his writings — he trusted God and gave thanks for all God did for him.
Are we as trusting and as thankful to God as we need to be? When we are having troubles, it is a natural thing for Christians to offer prayers to God. Prayer to our creator is one of the many blessings God’s children enjoy. This attitude of trust and need for God must be followed (even as David is our example) by giving thanks to God for the answer to our prayers.
It is good to stop and give thanks for all blessings. Just never forget from whom those blessings come.