It may be because my wife and I have been preparing for a Missions trip to Africa lately, and all the information we’ve been receiving about what we can expect to experience when we get there, but I have been really conscious lately of all the things I have to be thankful for.
Of course, this weekend is Thanksgiving and so it is timely to write about being thankful.
In my own life, I find that I do need to stop occasionally and reflect on the blessings of being in a country such as ours as well as taking the time to look around me and be grateful for family and friends.
Maybe you are not like me, but may I ask, when was the last time you turned on the tap at home and enjoyed a good clean drink of water? It’s easy for us to do that without even thinking about it. But, where we’re going in Africa, that is virtually impossible.
So, I’m thankful for clean water. I’m thankful for local government that sees to such things even though it may cost me more in taxes to enjoy that benefit.
While I’m at it, let me say I am thankful for my family. My wife is a great blessing to me as are my two sons and my daughter and their spouses. They have given me six grandchildren for which I am truly thankful. I realize that may be a bit personal, but I am thankful and we often don’t let them know.
I am thankful also for the church I pastor here in Morrisburg. I’m amazed at their love and care for each other and for people in general. I have been blessed to be with them over the past number of years.
Most of all, I’m thankful for the love of God. Ephesians 2:4-5 says, “But God is so rich in mercy and He loved us so much that even while we were dead because of our sins, He gave us life when He raised Christ from the dead”.
David the great songwriter penned the words, “It is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord and to sing praises unto His name”.
Lloyd John Ogilvie, the wonderful Pastor of First Presbyterian Church in Hollywood, in his book God’s Best For My Life, says, “God’s grace, plus our gratitude, equals greatness. When we give God the glory, greatness grows in our character”.
There’s an old hymn written by Johnson Oatman Jr. back in 1897. The words of the refrain are these:
Count your blessings name them one by one,
Count your blessings see what God has done.
Count your blessings name them one by one
Count your many blessings see what God has done.”
Maybe this is a good time to stop and consider all the things you have to be thankful for. Maybe because of some loss or tragedy in you life you think you have nothing to be thankful for.
May I encourage you to take a few moments to look around. I expect you too will be surprised at all that God has blessed you with. Why not give Him thanks this glorious Thanksgiving season? Blessings to you all!