Happy Thanksgiving Day!
Yes, today is not the official one that comes every year on the fourth Thursday of November. Sorry, no aroma of turkey in the oven. No pumpkin pie lathered with whip cream. If it’s Friday for you like it is here for me, give thanks, no frenzied shopping!
And I hope we’re giving thanks today. I hope every day.
These days more than any others, blessed are the flexible—for they shall not be bent out of shape.
It looks like we’re going to have our big family gathering on Tuesday so our oldest daughter who works Thanksgiving can join us. On Thursday we’ll be eating leftovers!
We need this annual reminder
It prods us to add it all up and recognize how much we have to be thankful for and where it all comes from.
Out of all the Thanksgiving messages I have heard in my 67 years, one thought sticks out more than any other: This is Thanksgiving Day—not Thanksfeeling Day. Not Be Thankful Day. Not ThanksThinking Day.
If Christ is living in us, thanksgiving should be coming out of us. Who doesn’t appreciate a “Thank you!” Gratitude has been called the mother of all good virtues.
Steve Martin joked that you can’t play a sad banjo song, and made us laugh while he plucked happy strums that just didn’t go with his woe-is-me lyrics—and it’s hard to be in a bad attitude when you are feeling thankful.
Trouble is, “in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be … unthankful” (2 Tim. 3:1-2).
It’s been said there are three ways to fail at everything in life:
1. Complain about everything
2. Blame others for your problems.
3. Never be grateful.
Two men looked out of prison bars. One saw the mud, the other the stars. Same situation, different view chosen!
Do yourself a favor, follow this link and carefully consider an amazing poem written by 17-year-old Chanie Gorkin, “Worst Day Ever.” Chanie said she “wanted to show how your day is really based on how you look at things.”
We must choose to give thanks in all circumstances!
“In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Thes. 5:14). This is one place in the Bible where we are told specifically what the will of God is. Even in what looks like thankless situations!
Corrie Ten Boom in The Hiding Place relates how she and her sister Betsy were penned up in the worst German prison camp they had seen yet: Ravensbruck. The barracks were extremely overcrowded and flea-infested.
Betsy finally convinced Corrie to thank God for every detail of their living quarters, including the fleas. During the months spent at the camp, they were surprised to find that the guards did not interfere with their Bible study and prayer meetings. Months later they learned the reason: because of the fleas!
is learning more and more about how being thankful actually programs the neurons in our brain to physically induce us to be habitually more thankful.
We need Christian neurons!
How amazing that we can make the right spiritual choice to be thankful, and physically alter our amazingly created brain, and it then promotes us making the right spiritual choice next time!
And research conducted at the University of California, Davis, found that cultivating an attitude of gratitude reduces the stress hormone cortisol by 23%!
Is Thanksgiving based on the Feast of Tabernacles?
The Pilgrims spent several years among Sephardic Jews in Holland.
In fact, it is widely believed that the Puritan settlers, who were great students of the Hebrew Scriptures, based the first American Thanksgiving on Sukkot” (God’s Appointed Times, 1993, p. 92).
Those who keep God’s Holy Days (Lev. 23) get to be thankful at the Feast of Tabernacles when it occurs in September or early October, and then again at Thanksgiving!
The Bible encourages giving thanks
In the New King James Version “thankful” occurs only three times, “unthankful” only twice. However, “thanksgiving” appears 31 times, and “give thanks” or “give you [God] thanks” 43 times.
“Let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God … the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name” (Heb. 13:15). Not just thinking it or feeling it!
Have you seen the Facebook post: What if all you have when you wake up tomorrow is what you gave God thanks for today!
“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.”—John F. Kennedy