As Thanksgiving Day approaches, I think a heart exam seems appropriate :) (no...not a warning about fat & cholesterol piled up during Thanksgiving feasts). What is our heart condition? Do we have a thankful heart? Truly thankful? Not thankful only for material things...for worldly pleasures, but truly thankful to God for everything in all circumstances (or in spite of circumstances)... Do we daily thank God for who He is and what He has done? Or do we only thank Him when He answers our prayers the way we want, or only when we have been blessed with something big?
"Give thanks to the Lord, call on His name; make known among the nations what He has done." 1 Chronicles 16:8
"Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name. For the Lord is good and His love endures forever; His faithfulness continues through all generations." Psalm 100:4-5
"But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ." 1 Corinthians 15:57
"Always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ." Ephesians 5:20
"So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in Him, rooted and built up in Him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness." Colossians 2:6-7
"Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful." Colossians 4:2
"Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." 1Thessalonians 5:16-18
"Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our 'God is a consuming fire.'" Hebrews 12:28-29
"By Him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to His name." Hebrews 13:15
"Thankfulness is the soil in which joy thrives." ~Unknown
"When thou hast thanked thy God for every blessing sent,
What time will then remain for murmurs or lament?" ~Unknown
A thankful heart not only produces a joyful heart but also gives us a right/pleasant attitude. The attitude of awe, admiration, reverence, and gratitude for the Almighty God! Other benefits include contentment, peace, complaint-free atmosphere, no envy, no covetousness, desire/eagerness to give and share, etc., besides doing God's will.
I will never forget what a dear friend of mine said when I visited her and her daughter at the hospital after a car accident that took her son's life and left her daughter in critical condition. I went there to encourage and comfort her but instead, her words touched me deeply. She said, "I'm so thankful that the Lord gave me all those years to homeschool my kids. I thank Him for all the time we spent together." She retained a thankful heart throughout the whole ordeal. Wow...isn't that a wonderful example of "giving thanks in all circumstances"?
A Simple Prayer of Thanksgiving by Helen Steiner Rice
I come not to ask, to plead or implore You,
I just come to tell You how much I adore You,
For to kneel in Your Presence makes me feel blest
For I know that You know all my needs best...
And it fills me with joy just to linger with You
As my soul You replenish and my heart You renew,
For prayer is much more than just asking for things--
It's the peace and contentment that quietness brings...
So thank You again for Your mercy and love
And for making me heir to YOUR KINGDOM ABOVE!
Father, We Thank Thee by Grenville Kleiser
Father, we thank Thee:
For peace within our favored land,
For plenty from Thy bounteous hand,
For means to give to those in need,
For grace to help in thought and deed,
For faith to walk, our hands in Thine,
For truth to know Thy law divine,
For strength to work with voice and pen,
For love to serve our fellow men,
For light to goal ahead to see,
For life to use alone for Thee,
Father, we thank Thee.
*I'm hosting 'Tis the Season to Be Thankful Giveaway. Please click here to enter.
~Please visit here for the links to other Spiritual Sundays posts. Thanks so much to Charlotte and Ginger for hosting Spiritual Sundays every week.