Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving;
let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!
For the LORD is a great God,
and a great King above all gods.
Next week is Thanksgiving and for our family that also means a family reunion. Thorns from all over come to our house to celebrate this special day together. It sounds wonderful, but behind the scenes is another story. The cleaning (this is my “spring cleaning” time), the food prep, and everyday life quickly become overwhelming. It is so easy to lose sight of what we are coming together to celebrate. It also shows that I have not yet learned to be thankful in all things.
Why is thanksgiving so important?
1. It is a matter of obedience.
God commands us to be a people who give thanks in all things (1 Thess. 5:18)
2. God deserves it.
He is Lord and King, he is creator and Saviour. He is the supreme ruler of all things and simply because of who he is he deserves all our praise. But he is also good and generous and this should prompt us to shower him with thanks for every good gift we have (James 1:17).
3. It changes us.
Learning to live a life of thankfulness will make us more observant of all of the wonders God brings into our lives. This, in turn, will make our love for God grow, which results in us being better prepared to handle those times when we find ourselves in need and in pain.
4. Praise exalts God in the eyes of others.
Its a way to show how beautiful he is as we point to his character and work.
“Whoever offers praise glorifies me” Psalm 50:23
How can we know if we are thankful women?
1. Do we often think of all of God’s mercies and graces in our lives? Is his praise often in our lips? This is a sign of thankful hearts.
2. Is our love for God growing? His generosity toward us should move us from loving his gifts to loving him as Giver.
3. Are we good stewards? Thankfulness leads a woman to be careful with the gifts she has received. A thankful woman is careful with her physical possessions, with her body, and with her family and friends.
4. Are we obedient? The truly thankful understand what it is they have been saved from. This gratitude for the greatest of all gifts leads us to follow Jesus and do as he commands.
5. Are our complaints fading? A thankful heart is less likely to complain in frustrating circumstances or get angry in hard times. It is easy to be thankful when skies are blue and the sun is shining, but it is another story when the storm rolls in. The person who can praise God in the midst of pain, disappointment and hardship has learned thankfulness.
I am convicted as I think about these things. Thankfulness is not something that just grows in my life. It must be cultivated by joyful awareness of all that God is and has done for us. We must persist in being thankful.
When we can see no reason for praise—we must believe in the divine love and goodness, and sing in the darkness.
- J.R. Miller
God calls us to be thankful because it is right. It is right to praise our God but it is also for our benefit. A thankful heart cannot lose. It makes our bright days brighter and our hard days easier to handle. It lifts our countenance towards heaven and from there comes our hope, our joy, our salvation, and our eternal home.
Looking to Jesus,