h1

Spiritual Director’s November / Thanksgiving Message

November 1, 2010

IT IS GOOD TO GIVE THANKS
THANKSGIVING WAS AN IMPORTANT PART OF ISRAELITE CULTURE

Every morning and evening, the Levites sacrificed a thank offering to the Lord.

This was to keep the people’s focus on their true provider–GOD.

Psalms 92:1-2 tells us,
“It is good to give thanks to the Lord and to sing praises to Your name, O Most High; to declare Your lovingkindness in the morning and your faithfulness at night.”

We would do well to imitate the Levites in this way, giving thanks in the morning and evening. When I think what I am grateful for each day, two things come to mind:
For the grace extended to me by our Lord Jesus Christ and for my friends in the Emmaus Community and my five churches in Unityville. Just being able to retire after forty years of ministry and being able to preach for a few more years is worth it all. I thank God for a nice home and for friends who are there for me to pray for me.

Especially I thank God for three meals a day and a few snacks in between. But thanking God goes beyond appreciating what He gives us and does for us. When we thank Him, we honor Him. A humble attitude of gratefulness refocuses our attention on the things that really matter in this life. When we have this mind set, our gaze moves away from anxiety to genuine contentment. The Apostle Paul knew it well.

He writes, “BE ANXIOUS FOR NOTHING, BUT IN EVERYTHING BY PRAYER AND SUPPLICATION WITH THANKSGIVING LET YOUR REQUESTS BE MADE KNOWN TO GOD. AND THE PEACE OF GOD, WHICH SURPASSES ALL COMPREHENSION, WILL GUARD YOUR HEARTS AND MINDS IN CHRIST JESUS” (Phil 4:6-7). Thanking the Lord each day refreshes our relationship with Him and reinforces our faith.

So how do we express our thankfulness to God? By simply saying THANK YOU!!! Prayers of appreciation are the blessings to the Father. “He who offers the sacrifice of Thanksgiving honors me, and to him who orders His way aright, I shall show the salvation of God” (Psalms 50:23). We can demonstrate gratitude by worshipping, singing, praising Him in public, giving generously, and living a Godly life.

Even if you never get anything in return, you can honor God through actions in your everyday life that demonstrate thankfulness for His incredible generosity to you. In doing so, you will experience close intimacy with Him. It’s my prayer that you emulate the Levites in this way and receive the blessings that come from a grateful heart.

Have a Blessed Thanksgiving!

Bishop Jim Sunderland
Spiritual Director of Keystone Emmaus
Pastor of Unityville United Methodist Parish
Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: