You remember the challenge of the Apostle Paul: always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ (Ephesians 5:20).
God is impressing upon me how vital it is that I maintain an attitude of gratitude at all times and in all situations. This struck me first one morning when I was walking, observing the heavens and feeling the wind against my face. Life is too short for any of us to take permanent residence in the doldrums. We must wrench our minds and hearts away from the ambiguities to the certainties, away from the obstacles to the opportunities, away from the fears to the joys, away from the ugly to the beautiful, and away from the destructive to the constructive.
We seem to be fascinated by sad and tragic stories. If we keep ingesting sad stories and bad news, we are all going to be perpetually depressed. We must take some control of the sounds and sights that come into our ears and eyes. We have got to move toward a disciplined lifestyle that is not bottom-feeding on the macabre.
This Thanksgiving let’s really give thanks. Let’s lead our families to give thanks. Here are two simple ways to do it.
First, read Psalm 100 before you eat your Thanksgiving meal. I would have to do a little loud talking and arm-waving to do this at the family meal I will be attending. It’s six short verses, but it calls us into God’s presence with thanksgiving.
Second, suggest that someone offer thanks for the meal. Volunteer to do it yourself if no one else offers. You may want to write a short prayer if you are nervous praying without notes.
A little preparation goes a long way. I have already received the agenda for the Crosby Thanksgiving Meal this Friday. We are going to sing for 25 minutes, and then we are going to pray and eat—all 150 of us!