This was the first Thanksgiving in the last fourteen years since Debbie and I have been married that we spent the holiday not helping to host ECMA’s Thanksgiving Day Feast. Instead we went to Atlanta and enjoyed being with our grandkids who we only get to see a couple of times each year. It was a good time for not only enjoying each other’s company but also for having the opportunity to impart and support the Spiritual values being taught to these little ones.
I shared with them the story of the origins of Thanksgiving when persecuted Christians left their homelands and became refugees in a foreign land. I shared how William Bradford, the governor of their new community of Plymouth proclaimed a day of Thanksgiving in spite of having lost one half of their brothers and sisters the year before to the harsh New England winter. These Pilgrims celebrated and gave thanks to God an abundant harvest that they had reaped with the aid of the Native people who welcomed them and taught them to plant and hunt the local game.
As we move into the Christmas season I hope you never forget Thanksgiving’s beginnings. I also hope you never forget how blessed we are and how grateful to God we should be. It is good and fitting that as Christians to remember that the holiday is not Thanks-getting, Its Thanks-giving. And so we should be generous in sharing what God has given us.
As we went around the Thanksgiving dinner table and shared what we were thankful for, I said to my family that we should also remember to WHOM we are to give thanks. When we take for granted what God has done for us, we can become calloused, filled with pride and therefore outside of the will of God. Remember these words from the Apostle Paul. “In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you." 1 Thess. 5:1
At this time I also want to take a moment to tell you how thankful I am to you. I am always humbled at the notion that you would take the time to read these weekly devotionals.
I encourage you to attend one of our four services this weekend at C3 where I will be speaking on who are Mighty God is and sharing some important news about my family’s future.
Your pastor and partner in ministry,