“And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And be thankful.”(Colossians 3:15)
“As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.”(Colossians 2:6-7)
“Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise. Give thanks to him, bless his name. For the LORD is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.”(Psalm 100:4-5)
Historically, November has been a time to give thanks to God for the many blessings bestowed upon us. The verses above are a sampling of the importance of taking the time to be thankful, to be grateful for all that God has done. SO much of our energy and time is spent on the pursuit of what God alone can provide. There are 69 references from the Bible which illustrate the need to cultivate this attitude of thankfulness and gratitude.
Becoming a disciple of Jesus Christ is only possible through the presence and power of the Holy Spirit, and one of the consequences of being given the gift of faith is that faith drives you to trust in the promises of God. Trusting in your relationship with Jesus Christ amidst a part of the body of Christ that is the fellowship of believers called Christ the King Lutheran Church compels you to fully live in to the promise that God is real and does exist, and that God will provide everything you need. Therefore, I will give thanks for what has been, look forward to what will be, and fully live in the present.
Thanksgiving is not just a national holiday in November; it is a state of mind, an attitude of gratitude that we can cultivate and celebrate every day. During the month of November, I would like to challenge all of us to keep a list of things that we are thankful for. Through the activity of listing and reflection, prayer and contemplation, we will grow in our ability to give thanks to our God.
Living in God’s amazing grace,
Pastor Matthew Groenke