“In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” ~ 1 Thessalonians 5:18 ~
So by living with Americans I have become more keenly aware of many of their holidays. Most of them I knew by name, but not their dates. Some of them are worth keeping and others not so relevant. But Thanksgiving Day, I think, is a good one and I wish Australia had a traditional Thanksgiving Day.
“Surely the righteous shall give thanks unto Thy name: the upright shall dwell in Thy presence.” ~ Psalms 140:13 ~
Giving thanks is something we should do each day. It helps to refocus us, opens our eyes to all our blessings and privileges, and helps us to have a better attitude about life in general.
“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 ~
I know that sometimes I can get so caught up in the bad things that are happening that I forget that the fact that I am alive is a gift from God; I forget that the fact that I have a body part that can be in pain is a gift – some people would give anything to have an arm or leg that could have pain sensors. I think about all the work I have to do and yet some people don’t have a job.
So today, on this Thanksgiving Day I want to give thanks to God, for the following:
- Jesus – my Lord and Savior, merciful and just, who gave up heaven and came to this sinful earth to take my place, my punishment, my death – and rose again! – so that I could live with Him forever.
- The Holy Bible – The most amazing book I’ve ever read. It is God’s letter to humanity. It answers all of life’s questions. It changes lives, it reveals God’s true character, and the future of this world.
- Life – It is a precious thing that is so easily wasted or lost. Each day God wakes me up to spend time with Him so that I can, by His grace, give glory to Him through my life. Then He gives me the strength and wisdom to do the tasks I have for each day. He gives me an abundant life.
- Purpose – If you had asked me 5 years ago what I would be doing today, I would not have said that I would be in Cambodia serving as a missionary. I didn’t really have any definite goals or plans. I was just living each day for myself – selfish and unsatisfied.
- Family and Friends – God knows whom I’ve needed in my life at the right times. I thank God for those who love and support me, and I thank those people for their love and care. I especially thank Him for my co-missionaries, past and especially present, whose dedication and love for the Lord and His work inspire and challenge me. I thank Him for their friendship and love.
- Trials and Challenges, Heartaches and Shortcomings – As difficult as life gets sometimes, I recognize that God is molding and shaping me by all the experiences that He allows in my life – As gold and silver refined in the fire!
- Tim and Wendy Maddocks – who have granted me the privilege of serving here at Wat Preah Yesu for the past 3 years. I admire them both greatly. I have learnt so much about service and faith from them. I love them both so much.
- My Students – They are all so special, so different from each other, and they teach me so much!
- Prayer Meetings – I wonder how I ever lived without them!
- Provision – God is faithful and is providing all my needs
- Viathar – my dog who is right now barking up a storm and generally being a little bit annoying – but I’ve learned to appreciate his barking after nearly losing him to a mystery disease a month or so ago.
There’s obviously so much that we have to be thankful for. So today, take the time to stop and thank God for all He’s done for you, and also take the time to thank the people around you for who they are or what they do.