I have come to the end of a long Thanksgiving Day. (Though not as long as Debbie’s) Things went well, with the exception of forgetting to take my pills at lunch time. I traveled to Cheyenne, Wyoming and joined Charlie Simineo and his family while Debbie stayed in Fort Collins and was on call. It was great to enjoy the full Thanksgiving meal around the family table outside of a hospital setting.
On the way home, I stopped in Wellington to visit with Sam and Sue Schmidt (my sister-in-law and brother-in-law). Our friends Gwen and Phyllis Kovac were there and it was good to see them once again and to reminisce about us all being together last year for Thanksgiving at Northern Colorado Rehab. Hospital.
I trust all you had an enjoyable Thanksgiving Day and enjoyed food, family and friends.
BIBLE VERSE FOR TODAY… “…giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ…” Ephesians 5:20
Worship, praise and thanksgiving all go hand in hand. In the context of Ephesians 5 Paul admonishes believers to be “…be filled with the Spirit…” and to sing and to commit to the “giving of thanks always…” The admonition to “be filled” is best understood as, “be continually filled with the Spirit…” When God’s Spirit is filling our lives, it is natural for us to be full of thanksgiving to God.
The parallel passage in Paul’s letter to the Colossians reads,
“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.” Colossians 3:17
Paul’s focus here is on the Word of Christ being central in our lives. When you have God’s Spirit and God’s Word in the center of your heart, you have thankfulness there as well.
I liked the words from the Thanksgiving greeting of Colorado State Representative Clarice Navarro-Ratzlaff, when she wrote,
“I am thankful for the love of my Creator, without whom I could do and be nothing. In our darkest hour, I am comforted that in Him all things are possible.”
In those few words, I believe you find the focus that is needed for each of our lives. If we feel God is distant we need to return to the truth of His Word that His love never fails and that He is with us always. When we feel stretch beyond our ability, we need to remind ourselves that He is the strength of all we can do and be. As Paul said, “…in Him we live and move and have our being.” (Acts 17:28)
When the path ahead looks dark and the way uncertain, we can take comfort that the God who loves us and is with us will make a way. With Him all things are possible. You can trust Him for what you need and even in advance give Him thanks for His provision for that in your life. As I reflect on my life over the past sixteen months I have found that to be true.
We don’t have to wait for a holiday on the calendar to be people who have thankful hearts and lives.