It is the week leading up to Thanksgiving. We must admit that the actual giving of thanks can get lost in the shuffle of the week. After all, look at all that we will be doing. Traveling to be with family is a huge issue. Wednesday, the day before the holiday, is the largest travel day in the United States.
Then there is the matter of food preparation, cleaning the house, and watching parades and football games. And then there is Friday. Get ready for non-stop shopping on the sales day to beat all sales days. And we have completely forgotten to give thanks.
We are not the first. Jesus once healed ten men of the dreaded disease of leprosy, all in the same day. Only one of those men returned to give thanks to the Lord. What happened to the other nine? Actually, in the Bible, we are never told. We simply know that they failed to go back to Jesus to give thanks.
I imagine there were a number of reasons (or should they be called excuses) they would give. Some of them had not seen their families in months, or maybe years. They were really excited to get that opportunity. Others could claim that they were just doing what Jesus told them to do. Whatever the reason, they missed something important.
One thing I know about giving thanks is this. When I am thankful for all that God has given to me, it changes my entire outlook on life. I become less selfish. I become more generous to others. I become kinder.
What a blessing to live in a land that sets aside one day (and a very long weekend) for the purpose of giving thanks. Don’t get so caught up in everything else that is happening this week that you forget what really matters.
Take the time to give thanks to the One who is responsible for all the good things that you have. Thank the Lord for His grace and His blessings in your life.
- by Brad Butler
Pastor, First Baptist Church, Pembroke