In Everything Give Thanks
My fingers are dancing across the keys of this computer as I listen to "I Need Thee," a grand and precious hymn.
The desperation of my spirit increasingly calls me to the quietness of His presence. The hymn referenced often flows through my mind in the night and as my first thought of the day.
In the cauldron of life's challenges the Holy Spirit calls us to enter through the Gates of Worship with thanksgiving. We begin counting blessings lacking the ability to count the infinite number of times and ways God has favored us. The more we look up with praise the greater our joy becomes. The greater our joy becomes the more we recognize our need of God's grace.
Thanksgiving week is a wonderful season, but it is not the only season of gratitude. Thankfulness is a natural byproduct of salvation. To have the joy of knowing Jesus exceeds the boundaries of any earthly pleasure.
Earthly pleasures may indeed have a measure of happiness or gratification. However, temporal pleasures pass. Moses adjudicated this challenge by deciding that pleasing God was better than pleasing Pharaoh. Moses considered obedience to God more rewarding than the pleasures of Egypt.
The current sermon series is "Attitude of Gratitude." Our world has moved from "tolerance" to "accusation". The spirit of faultfinding, blaming others and negativism is marketable, divisive and dangerous. As Christians we cannot afford to resort to carnal behavior predicated in our being better persons if we can prove other persons are worse than us. The weaknesses, faults, failures and sins of others do not combine to make us better persons. In Ezekiel 18 God makes it clear that each of us is judged for who we are by our own character and behavior. Challenged by a fallen world our hearts must turn to God with faith and hope, both of which are sisters of thanksgiving.
Today was a huge investment of Covenant Church in the lives of precious people and their families. While workmen were diligent with construction and we could hear the sounds of mortar mixers, hammers and machines, inside we were diligently tasking ourselves with encouraging and instructing precious persons to keep their focus upon Christ.
My hope and prayer is that you will take time to count blessings. Begin by giving thanks to God for sending Jesus as a missionary to find us and save us. Then be thankful for the Church. Be thankful for the fellowship of the Church. Be thankful for family, for friends, for neighbors, for children, for those who guard our nation and keep it safe, for those who pray for us, for missionaries, for heaven and for what God has planned for us!
"In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus towards you," I Thessalonians 5:18
Laila and I thank God for you.