Day 11 of 40 Days to Celebrate the King: Thankfulness
Scripture reading for Today: Psalm 95 and Isaiah 43:1-21
Happy Thanksgiving! Today many of us will gather with some familiar faces, family oo friends, sit around a table laden with enough food to cause us to repent for what we are about to do, and hold hands and pray a sincere prayer of thankfulness. Even for those whose day does not look that way, who sit with two or three, or even alone at a Chinese restaurant and watch the football game on the television hanging in the corner, there will be some awareness of an added degree of thankfulness to the day. If you live in America, it is hard to believe that you could not know that today is Thanksgiving, and it is hard to believe that you do not have something to be thankful for.
We, most of us today, have a roof over our heads, food on our table, some people or some person that believes we matter, and we are breathing. Those things alone should be enough to drive us to our knees with thanksgiving. Those things, and an awareness that they come from a God that loves us with an everlasting love should fill our hearts with gratitude and our lips with praise. Our psalm today says, “Come, let us sing to the Lord. Let us shout joyfully to the Rock of Our Salvation. Let us come to Him with THANKSGIVING. Let us sing songs of praise to Him.”
Not just today, but every day, taking time to remind ourselves of who God is and what He has done for us makes us happier, healthier, and more hopeful. From our blood pressure to our anxiety levels, we are better of by adopting a posture of gratefulness to the Omnipotent Being, the Higher Power, the Force of Nature, or whatever term we use to ascribe otherness and to remind ourselves that we are not in this alone. The “God of our understanding,” as the 12 Steps call Him, is certainly big enough to know His own Name, but also gracious enough to allow us the process of discovering just who He is.
And when we do, at the top of our Thanksgiving list will be His marvelous plan of salvation. That when I was at my worst, He imagined for me a best, and He began to draw me to Himself by making me aware of His great Love. In Isaiah 43 He says to me, “Do not be afraid for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name. You are Mine.” When I was nasty and dirty, and completely unlovable, He sat on the edge of my bed, and, as we will read on Saturday, He sang a love song over me.
Doris and I have a wonderful friend, Betsy Harvey, who sent a message to Doris a few other ladies that have loved each other and stayed connected for 30 years. They very cleverly refer to themselves as “the girls,” and, though they don’t get together as much as they used to, still encourage and support one another in phone calls, emails, or texts. Betsy sent the Facebook message that used a current event headline to remember God’s amazing grace. I asked if I could share it here.
“Good morning! We just returned from FL. While there we watched the Kyle Rittenhouse trial. His response to the “not guilty” verdict on all counts brought me to tears. Today, reading in Roman 8, it occurred to me, do I respond like that to my “not guilty“ verdict? Have I been unable to breathe, been physically shaken to my core, unable to remain standing? It has given me pause for thought and emotion, that I have never reacted with such emotion to the freedom I have been given, and mine is so much easier; by choice/not a jury. I am grateful. Wishing you and your families a wonderful Thanksgiving Day Thursday and every day! “
Isn’t that good? Be thankful today, above all things, that He has declared you “not guilty.”
Blessings and Grace!