Thanksgiving: A time for CONFESSION and CONVICTION
When I think of the many blessings of God in my life, I must CONFESS two things: (1) I am thankful for all the good things God has sent my way. And (2) I’m thankful for all the things He wisely withheld from me. Though I may not have all the things I would like to have, neither have I had to face all the things I would not want to face.
When you count your blessings, be sure to thank God for all the things you have missed as well as the blessings you have received.
I am also CONVICTED. When I consider all God has done for me, I am convicted how little I have done for Him! And what little I do for Him, I only do by the grace He has given me (1 Pet. 4:11). Every good thing in my life I owe to Him. I have nothing to glory in. Freely I have received—So I should also freely give (Mt. 10:8). As David prayed, “But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able to offer so willingly after this sort? for all things come of thee, and of thine own have we given thee” (1 Chron. 29:14).
Anyone who is truly thankful should (1) CONFESS he is not worthy of the least of God’s benefits (Gen. 32:10) and (2) be CONVICTED at how little he actually thanked the One who made it all possible.
God gave you a gift of 86,400 seconds today. Have you used one of them to say “thank you?
“Giving thanks ALWAYS for ALL THINGS unto God…” —Ephesians 5:20
My mother was a British citizen living in Worester, England during World War 2. I remember her telling me about Hitler’s bombing campaign upon English cities. Many families sent their children to live with friends or relatives in the country in hopes that they would be safe. Those who remained behind sought cover in bomb shelters. Winston Churchill designated my mother’s hometown of Worester to be the seat of an evacuated government in case of mass German invasion.
During the war an English church newspaper published the story of a man and his wife who returned from a night in a bomb shelter to find their home destroyed. The man said, “This morning someone told me that we had lost everything. Its a lie. Thank God, I’ve still got health and strength to carry on with my job. I still have you, my dear, and the children. Thank God, you’re all safe. Hitler hasn’t smashed my faith in the love and wisdom of God. Houses and buildings may be wrecked and ruined, but you and I can still hold on to things which can never be shaken or destroyed.”
“In EVERY THING GIVE THANKS; for this is the will of God” (1 Thess. 5:18). I believe we can all be thankful for the Lord’s blessings in our lives.
This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it. —Psalms 118:24
Don’t you enjoy those days when everything is fine and there are no problems? We’re healthy and free of pain. The blue bird of blessing is singing the song of prosperity. Nothing is going wrong, and everything is good!
But there is a subtle danger to misinterpret those “care-free” days. We may begin to think God is blessing us because we are living right—Things are going well, because we are doing well. We think everything is good because we are doing good. This attitude is wrong. We need to recognize God’s blessings are due to God’s goodness, not our goodness (James 1:17; Eccl. 2:24).
It is during those “good days” we seem to forget it is only by God’s mercies that we are not consumed (Lam. 3:22). God warned Israel not to forget Him during the “good times” (read Dt. 8:10-17).
Are things going well for you right now? Why not pause right now and thank God for His goodness in your life? Pray: “God, I recognize that I’m not worthy of the least of Your blessings, yet You’ve blessed me more than I deserve. Thank You Lord, for Your manifold goodness and grace to me. Amen!”