Giving Thanks to God

( [email protected] ) Nov 15, 2003 11:13 AM EST

We love Thanksgiving. We’re willing to trek 10 hours through traffic so we can enjoy a 1-2 day gathering with our family members over a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. But when we gather, we hope enjoy our weekend in a warm family setting. Sometimes, instead of being a time where we give thanks to the Lord for all He does and to our family members for all we do, we can become entrapped in the commercial aspect of the holiday or also turn the family gathering into a feud.

What we must remember is that Thanksgiving was a day where our ancestors of faith dedicated and gave thanks to God for protecting them through the struggles of living in a new frontier. That’s why we celebrate Thanksgiving, not simply to eat turkey and cranberry sauce. Over the abundance of food on the table and love in the room as our family gathers we partake in giving thanks to the Lord for giving us such fruitful blessings. This is not to say to not eat turkey or not have your cranberry sauce but to switch the focus of the holiday back to its original meaning. The gathering will not hold much value unless it is done from a correct heart. The motive of the people gathered will determine the value of the Thanksgiving. If people just gather to eat a meal then it just becomes a family buffet. However, if everyone gathers with the longing to express their gratefulness for all the wonderful works God has performed in their everyday lives, a Thanksgiving dinner can become a heavenly banquet! So, it really does matter the kind of outlook we come with.

Giving thanks does not only pertain to the material blessings we received from God but also the blessings of love we share with our family and friends. It is really something to be thankful for when we can spend time with other instead of being alone during the holidays. We are also thanking the Lord for those around us. When we see them, our hearts should swell up with joy and praise because they have journeyed a distance to visit us. Viewing them as precious brothers and sisters under Christ, we should speak encouraging words and show them how grateful we are for them to be here in our lives. A mistake some may make exploiting the family time in order to pinpoint the wrong things each other are doing instead of complimenting them and giving them God-speed strength in the things they are doing well.

Although we should always be thankful for the grace the Lord has granted us everyday in our lives, we can specially show our gratitude by remembering and dedicating everything back to the Lord on Thanksgiving Day as well as show warm appreciation for the people in our lives.