“Gratitude bestows reverence, allowing us to encounter everyday epiphanies, those transcendent moments of awe that change forever how we experience life and the world.” – John Milton
Food, Family, Fellowship, and Football. It must be time for Thanksgiving. I imagine this year many of us, in fact all of us, will have many reasons to be thankful—thankful for our family, our country and most of all, our glorious Lord of glory.
The American “ Thanksgiving” is a cultural celebration but it epitomizes a transcultural concept and command for it is based upon the goodness of God.
“ Through Him then, let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that give thanks to His name.” (Heb. 13:15)
Everyday is to be a day of thanksgiving to God and for God because of who He is and what He does. I imagine that if you were to sit down and spend 10 minutes reflecting on who God is and what He has done in your life, you would be lost in the goodness of the grace of God and the gratitude we owe Him.
However, perhaps this has been a bad year—by that I mean a hard year—and a football game and a turkey dinner is not really going to fix it. I think of a former teaching assistant of mine who’s daughter was killed by a drunk driver a few weeks ago. I think of a friend of mine struggling with leukemia waiting to go on yet another experimental drug trial that his life may be extended, but there are no promises of a good outcome. I think of a friend who struggles with lupus and another who is a quadriplegic and trying to survive cancer. These people not only have in common a deep and profound degree of suffering but they also are godly servants of the King and they are grateful to serve Him until He calls them home. They proclaim with lips of praise the glory of the Lord and thank Him for who He is and yes, for what He is doing in their lives.
So let us give thanks and celebrate the goodness of God.
“We give Thee thanks, O Lord God, the Almighty, who art and who wast, because Thou hast taken Thy great power and hast begun to reign. (Rev. 11:17)
Until He comes for us,
Fred Chay, PhD
Grace Theology Press