A Thousand Thank You’s

 I thank my God always when I remember you in my prayers. Philemon 4

Thankfulness is a lesson I am still in the process of learning. Maybe, like Martha, I am overburdened with the pots and pans of life clanging in my ears, that I too easily pass by the quieter people who are nearest and dearest. It is far too easy to dash ahead to the next goal, the next project or chore, and to simply flick on the television and relax at day’s end without a moment to say thank you. So, this morning, before I rush out the door, let me say “Thank you!” and “God bless!” to the 1,000 people who for one reason or another have followed this blog. We are on a journey together, following the footsteps of the one who gave thanks and blessed the bread and the cup that He passed around the table to us. When we eat the bread and drink that cup together, we remember His death until He comes. Let’s begin this new day and new week to be thankful for those He has placed in our lives and treat one another with grace, respect for our differences and kindness.

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Giving Thanks Together

In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. KJV

I heard a snap, then the handle gave way and the bucket of rocks and shells I was carrying zeroed in on my big toe. The sharp pain in my foot and the first signs of blood told me this was going to be a game changer. As I quickly limped into the house calling out to my wife for help, I was definitely not thanking God. After she drove as fast as she could to the hospital, the only humorous moment came while I sat bent over in the wheelchair holding my foot as the security guard searched me for weapons at the door!

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Thankfully, the x-rays revealed nothing was broken but one thing was certain; like it or not, my plans were going to change. As we road home that night, rather than complain, my wife began to slowly list all the things we should be thankful for. First, we had insurance to pay for the emergency room, second, we I had received wonderful care from the health aide who washed the wound, the nurse who joked with me while she gave a tetanus shot and the doctor who gently encouraged me that my injury should heal with no complications. Compared to our daughter-in-law’s cancer or our grandchild’s kidney failure my problem was infinitesimally small, but the lesson was huge. Thankfulness is not something we always do alone. Even Paul had Silas with him when they sang praises in jail. Few of us in the middle of pain, grief or loss have the ability to honestly say “Thank you Jesus! I’m so happy right now!”. There are times when the best thing we can do is to lean on one another as together we learn to give God praise.

Giving Him Thanks

Always giving thanks to God the Father for everything in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.            Ephesians 5:20

In today’s verse the Apostle Paul tells us to be thankful for everything. Now without a doubt there are plenty of terrible things going on in the world around us all the time. But thankfulness is more than simply a play by play analysis of life as if it was some sort of cosmic football game. Instead the gratitude that God has in mind is about seeing things as God sees them as we come to worship.

We see the pot holes in the road while God sees the end of the journey. We feel the cold of the winter wind while God sees the roots of the trees resting while they gather their energy for spring. We are angry over hurtful words spoken to us while God is hoping it will give us opportunity to learn to forgive. We experience the loneliness of eight months of this Covid-19 shutdown but God is reminding us of what and who matter most in life.

We may not be able to see loved ones but we can tell them we love them by a card or a phone call. Maybe we won’t have a chance to sit at a table with our family for Thanksgiving but Jesus has promised us that He will sit down at the table with us wherever we are. God is good. We have much to be thankful for even in 2020! May God bless you and Happy Thanksgiving!

Giving Thanks

Giving thanks when things go well 
Is an easy thing to do
But to give Him thanks when the chips are down
Is God's will for me and you

Giving Thanks by Peter Caligiuri © 2020 All rights reserved