Photo credit by Hc_07
What do you have to be thankful for this Thanksgiving? I’m tired of hearing “nothing.” The founders of our faith found even the most difficult times to remain thankful.
Ezra 3:10-11 (New International Version)
“When the builders laid the foundation of the temple of the LORD, the priests in their vestments and with trumpets, and the Levites (the sons of Asaph) with cymbals, took their places to praise the LORD, as prescribed by David king of Israel. With praise and thanksgiving they sang to the LORD. “He is good; his love to Israel endures forever.” And all the people gave a great shout of praise to the LORD, because the foundation of the house of the LORD was laid.
The temple’s foundation was laid, and the people rejoiced, not because they had finished a job, but because they had started one. Through the trials and torments the Israelites had gone through, they were still able to utter shouts of victory when they were able to begin again, when they had laid the foundation for something much better to come. Why is this suitable for Thanksgiving? Because no matter how down you are, how much you hate your job, how much you wish you had a job, what you are doing is building a foundation for your family, your friends, and yourself. Rejoice and give thanks, because around the corner is a new start, a new foundation that has been laid.
Psalm 28:7 (New American Standard Bible)
The LORD is my strength and my shield; My heart trusts in Him, and I am helped; Therefore my heart exults, And with my song I shall thank Him.
We have a strong defender, stronger than Goliath, more powerful than Pharaoh, and he is our strength. He is our guardian, and when we trust in him, we are helped. That makes me thankful.
Jonah 2:9 (NASB)
But I will sacrifice to You with the voice of thanksgiving That which I have vowed I will pay Salvation is from the Lord.
Jonah had a lot of reasons not to be thankful. He was told he had to go to Ninevah, he was inside the belly of a whale at this point in his life. How much better are we doing right now? We have a lot to be thankful for, Shamu has not swallowed us whole. We may feel like fish food at times, but it always can be worse. Just ask Jonah.
Matthew 26:25 (NIV)
While they were eating, Jesus took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.”
Theology aside a moment, Jesus knew that he was going to die in a short time. Days, even. Shortly after this meal, he begged his Father to take away the cup, and let it pass to someone else, but he had time to give thanks for his daily bread. How close you can be, even to death, and still have so much to be thankful for.
This Thanksgiving, think of what you do have (not what you don't have), think of new beginnings, and be thankful.