Thursday, November 15, 2018

"Thanksliving" Part 9 The Sacrifices of Thanksgiving"

(Friends: during the next few weeks, as we approach the observance of thanksgiving in the United States, many (perhaps all) of the messages will address the theme of thanksgiving and gratitude.  Thanks, Glen)


Part 9 - "The Sacrifices of Thanksgiving"
    Some of our most genuine and devoted expressions of thanksgiving to God will offered with either no emotion or even feelings contrary to our choice to offer gratitude.

    "Let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving" (Psalm 107:22).

    In our present earthly existence, giving thanks will often involve the overcoming of our human, fleshly inclinations that scream or whisper at us that we should be silent, or even worse, complain.  This calls us to sacrifice, the sacrifice of natural tendencies for supernatural enabling.  We do not have to feel thankful in order to be thankful.  Sometimes we will say "Thank You" to God with bewildered minds, tear-filled eyes, and even broken hearts.  Born again believers in the Lord Jesus Christ walk along thorny paths that gouge wounds upon us in ways far beyond our understanding and pleasant emotion.  We nevertheless walk with a Lord who can keep our spirits strong and able to look up from the darkest pits to trust God, and to "sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving."

    What might most touch the heart of our Heavenly Father?  What most honors Him?  The happy "Thank You" that ascends from a bright and beautiful summit of blessedness?  Or gratitude offered by a broken and battered saint who can barely lift his head from the dust, but who somehow lifts his heart to thank the Lord for His unseen, but  "very present help in trouble?" (Psalm 46:1).  We know the answer.  It is, however, a hard answer.  We do well to direct our gratitude toward Heaven when its gifts provide obvious blessing.  We do even better when from the depths of trouble, we make our sacrifice, our sacrifice of thanksgiving.  Our Lord is worthy thereof, and we can know His peace even in times when the gratitude we lay upon the altar is stained with our spiritual, emotional, and even physical blood.  Only a God so glorious and wonderful as the Lord of Scripture can elicit such devotion and thanksgiving from His believing children.  Our Father can be trusted - and thanked - in all things.  And He can be blessed in all things by those who offer their gratitude from both lofty summits and lowly pits.

I cannot see through my tears, o Lord,
but still I know a Light rises in the darkness.
And I cannot feel but my fears, o Lord,
but still I know Your heart and its faithfulness.

I trust You therefore, Lord, and even more,
I thank You for that which I cannot see, I cannot feel.
For somehow in the deepest depths of this darkest night
You are here and You are all I will ever need.

I trust You therefore, Lord, and even more,
I thank You.

"In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you."'
(I Thessalonians 5:18)

Weekly Memory Verse
   "For it became Him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings" (Hebrews 2:10).


No comments: