Pause and evaluate your thankfulness

Published 4:46 pm Friday, November 21, 2014

I do not have to look very far in my personal life to find an abundance of reasons for which I should give thanks unto God.

We all should agree that thankfulness must not be limited to one day or one season of the year, but it deserves to be an ongoing, every day part of life.

Even on our most difficult days, if we will take a little time to reflect, surely we will recall some reason to give God thanks.

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While we can easily allow the festivities of Thanksgiving Day to consume our time and attention, we need to purposely take time to acknowledge the One from Whom all our blessings originate and give Him thanks.

The Bible reminds us of this truth:  “When you have eaten and are satisfied, praise the Lord your God for the good land He has given you” (Deuteronomy 8:10, New International Version).  And in verse 19:  “If you ever forget the Lord your God and follow other gods and worship and bow down to them, I testify against you today that you will surely be destroyed.”  God has truly given us a good and bountiful land; we have an obligation to praise and thank Him daily.

A most fitting bit of Scripture for the Thanksgiving season is Psalm 100.

Perhaps we should allow it generate a few questions about our personal thankfulness to God to help us evaluate the sincerity of our gratitude.

A good place to start our evaluation is to ask: “Do I express my thankfulness with actions?”  The psalmist approaches the topic of thanksgiving with instructions for the people to “Serve the Lord with gladness; come before His presence with singing” (King James Version, verse 2).  When we think of reasons to be thankful, the privilege to freely worship Him and personally serve Him should rank up near the top.

Sadly, by far too many, both of those actions are neglected.  May we gladly and enthusiastically show our thankfulness to God through consistency in worship and enthusiasm in Christian service.

Another question to ponder is:  “Am I aware of how truly awesome God is?”

As the psalmist reminds us, we are created by God (verse 3).  Yet by our attitudes we sometimes act as though we are independent, self made beings.  Scripture describes us as “the sheep of His pasture.”  Sheep are exceedingly dependant on their shepherd–he leads them to water, to food, and to safety.

How much more are we dependant on God!  We must be thankful that He has chosen to love us so dearly.  Indeed He is an awesome God.

As we evaluate the sincerity of our thankfulness unto God, we should also consider the question:  “Do I regularly give thought to the perfect nature of God?”

Psalm 100 concludes by reminding us of an everlasting truth:  “For the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting; and His truth endureth to all generations” (verse 5).

The perfect nature of God includes His provision for us; we are imperfect because of sin, but He sent Jesus Christ to make the way for imperfect humanity to come into a perfect relationship with God by accepting His forgiveness and the gift of eternal life through faith in Christ.

Pause and evaluate the genuineness of your thankfulness by considering these three questions.

May we all strive to be more sincere in our appreciation unto God for His abundant blessings upon us.