November 24 I Thursday
1 Peter 1
“Let us come before Him with thanksgiving…” —Psalm 95:2
Who was the last person that we said, “Thank you!” to? Why are we thankful at all? Our being thankful actually acknowledges our dependence on one another. For example, if someone were to open the door for us and we were to walk through it, we would say to that person, “Thank you!” because they have done something for us and we acknowledge our dependence on them.
Giving thanks is not just one-sided dependence; we are mutually dependent on one another. We are not alone in this world. We are interdependent with one another and we need to recognize that. The last time we went shopping, did we thank the cashier at the checkout before we left? They do not have the easiest job in the world dealing with a wide range of customers. The next time we go shopping, would we remember to take the time to look the cashier in the eye and tell them, “Thank you!”?
As we live with this spirit of gratitude, we acknowledge our dependence on God, because all that is good and right comes from Him. Therefore, if things do not go the way we would like them to go, rather than getting angry and bitter, we simply say, “Lord, thank You. You know what You are doing and I trust You in my circumstances.” This is why the language of faith is not “Please” but “Thank You.” “Please” is the language of a beggar who does not know if they will get what they want. “Thank you,” rather, is a language of trust. God knows exactly what He is doing and we thank Him in advance.
Giving thanks is not just a good concept to help us produce a healthier inner life or make us a nicer person to be around. It is actually God’s will that we live with a spirit of thanksgiving, with a grateful attitude. Paul tells us, “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thessalonians 5:18). In other words, if we do not live with thanksgiving, we are actually living in flat disobedience to the will of God.
Although Thanksgiving is a holiday that we celebrate once a year, where we come together with family and friends for a wonderful meal and give thanks, may we live each day with an attitude of gratitude, remembering to give thanks to God and to others around us. After all, we are dependent upon God and others each and every day.
Prayer: Dear God, thank You for all the blessings You have given me each day. I say “Thank You” because I trust what You are doing with my life. Praise You!