Four reasons to be thankful this Thanksgiving

I love Thanksgiving.

I think a lot of it has to do with it leading straight to Christmas and the fact that I no longer have to hide my decorations and Christmas playlists.

I also love the idea of being thankful, but I don’t think giving thanks should happen only one day a year. I will be the first to tell you I don’t give thanks consistently. My level of giving thanks around Thanksgiving is around a 9.5, but from December to October it’s at a solid 2.

One of the Bible's prominent leaders, Paul, understood. He started out almost all of his letters thanking his readers for their faith. “We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you” (Colossians 1:3). He knew that giving thanks is crucial for four main reasons.

Four Reasons to Thank God Today 

1. God wants it. 

“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus" (1 Thessalonians 5:18).

The Lord wants to be thanked for His providence and sovereignty. Jesus wants to be thanked for taking our sin and making us clean. The Spirit wants to be thanked for His guidance and comfort. God has emotions, and He desires praise. He is worthy and He deserves it.

On the other end of the spectrum, God is angered by our grievances and complaints in the same way that He was angered with the Israelites (Numbers 11:1-2).

2. Everything is from God.

“I always thank my God for you...for in him you have been enriched in every way—in all your speaking and in all your knowledge…” (1 Corinthians 1:4-5).

There is not a single thing we own, nor a single thing about who we are that has not been given to us.

There is not a single thing we own, nor a single thing about who we are that has not been given to us. From the tiniest detail of our appearance to the house we live in, from each and every breath to our salvation. Even in our greatest offerings and sacrifices, we can’t outgive God.

3. A lack of thanksgiving keeps us from moving forward. 

“I have heard the grumbling of the Israelites...” (Exodus 16:12)

After God led His people out of Egypt toward the Promised Land, they spent their time in the desert complaining. As a result, their eyes were taken off the big picture, and they spent much more time in the desert than they should have. The Promised Land was waiting, but their lack of thankfulness kept them from taking their next step into it.

Entitlement holds us back, but gratitude propels us forward into the life God designed for us.

4. Giving thanks changes our perspective.

When we are thankful in our prayers, our focus turns away from ourselves and to the goodness of God and all He has done for us. Our hearts are stirred with joy. Our joy begins to overflow and the result is fruit — growing to be more like Jesus. Fruit sprouting all over the place!

The art of thanksgiving is consistent, steadfast, genuine, year-round thankfulness in all things, for He is good.

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