Give Thanks to God in Everything

If you do not believe in God who are you giving thanks to? We in America on the 4th Thursday in November celebrate an annual holiday called Thanksgiving. Most in this land celebrate this holiday, but what is it they are celebrating, is it Thanksgiving? I say to you if you are not giving thanks to the Lord you are not having Thanksgiving. Sure you are celebrating something; many celebrate time with family, many enjoy the parties feasting and food, many celebrate their wealth and prosperity, and for many more it’s shopping and buying things. It is a celebration for sure but is it Thanksgiving? The first official Thanksgiving service was given on May 14th 1607 near Jamestown Virginia. You may notice that I said service because that is what it was; it was a service in remembrance and giving of thanks to the Lord. There would be many such Thanksgiving services throughout the American Colonies, the most Famous of which is at the Plymouth Plantation of The Pilgrims in 1621. The lives of these early colonists to America were very difficult; the winters were unbearably cold, they had to build shelter, they had to scavenge for food and learn to grow crops in a foreign environment. There were many lives lost in the winter months with much starvation and hardships but these colonists knew that it was God who provided for them and got them through the winter. They therefore came together to celebrate a feast to the Lord of harvest giving Him thanks for all that He had provided and had given to them.

Jesus in His wonderful dialogue with the Pharisee Nicodemus in John chapter 3 speaks of a time that occurred during the 40 years that the Israelites wondered through the desert with Moses. The Lord said: “And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:14-15). The story is found in Numbers chapter 21. God had provided for the people in the barren land of the desert by giving them manna from heaven, a flour like substance that they used in making bread. The people became unthankful, became grumblers and complainers towards God and loathed the food that God had provided for them to eat. So God sent snakes in amongst the people that bit them and many died. They came to Moses with a repentant heart and asked him to pray to God to save them. God told him to make a fiery serpent and put it on a pole and it should be that all who were bit when they looked upon it shall live. It was faith that healed them, God provided the method and when they looked upon the fiery serpent with faith they were saved. We have eyes to see the world that is around us, we also have spiritual eyes, for many they are weak from lack of use, but they are still there and can see spiritually and seeing spiritually is called faith. When we look upon Jesus Christ with our spiritual eyes and believe we are saved from our sins, one of which is being unthankful towards God for all that He has given and done for us, and when we look upon Him with our spiritual eyes and step out on faith and believe we shall live and never die.

Every single one of us have problems, this life is difficult, I like you have many difficulties and struggles that I am going through, in many ways this past year has been one of the most difficult in my life. But I am giving thanks to God inside of these struggles, I know through faith that “all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28). You see I have a confidence in this because of faith; God has given me faith in adversity, a hope in tribulation, and a Lord over my struggles in Jesus. You can have joy in hardship with the faith that it is for your good. Even with the struggles God has given me so much to be thankful for, my cup overflows. We have more than enough, he provides for us bountifully, and meets all of our needs. Most of all His grace, He adopted me as His child, He has given me an inheritance with Him in heaven that I do not deserve. It is on Him that I stand, I do not stand on my accomplishments for I can accomplish nothing, I do not stand on my good but His, He is good. It is easy to look around us with our fleshy eyes at our hardships and tribulations then loath what God has given us, but I encourage you to see with your spiritual eyes and see how bountifully God has blessed you and you will know that your cup runs over. Come with me in having a Thanksgiving service to the Lord. “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18).

God Bless you and Happy Thanksgiving,
Mike Peek