I stop and take a mental inventory of my days of late. How thankful have I been–or have I displayed thankfulness at all? Is thanks g-i-v-i-n-g a characteristic plainly obvious in my life? Is thanks giving part of my everyday conversation? Is thanks giving the tone my ready reply?
And let the peace of God rule in your hearts,
to the which also ye are called in one body;
and be ye thankful.
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom;
teaching and admonishing one another in psalms
and hymns and spiritual songs,
singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.
And whatsoever you do in word or in deed,
do all in the name of the Lord Jesus,
giving thanks to God and the Father by Him.
I was looking through some old photos this morning and it was there that I really got to thinking about thanks giving and what a thankful or thanks-giving life looks like. It’s easy in the moment (when things are going well, supplies are ample and health is strong and full) to be thankful. It’s another thing to be thankful or giving thanks when things aren’t going so well — when the yets of God aren’t yet (I’ll write on that another day).
It’s also pretty normal to consider one’s current state of affairs when feeling thankful or not. But those photos I was looking through changed my perspective quite a bit.
These photos are 10 years old. I’m thankful for this… all this. All the children living at home at the time, gallons of milk, heaps of food, piles of laundry, hundreds of thousands of miles on the fifteen passenger van and on and on. Thankful, really thankful.
Fast forward to today… less and fewer of everything… more and greater of so many other things. In between the more and fewer are sicknesses, health, losses, weddings, funerals, births, disappointments, achievements, mistakes, graduations and countless other life events that have clearly shown the great grace of God — things for which to give thanks. Much thanks. Had all these various things not happened, I’d not known the vastness of the graces of God and how to be thankful, or how to give thanks in/for adversity, loss, failure and regret.
So, this Thanksgiving, this time of giving thanks, I’m truly thankful, very thankful. Thanks giving is here for me. I trust it is for you as well. Or, soon will be.