The Power of Thanksgiving

As I promised you in My 2010 Blog Posting Schedule, I’ll be posting summaries of my Sunday Sermons here every Monday mornings.

Yesterday, during the morning service, which we now call ‘Family Gathering’ I spoke on the subject of thanksgiving. Thanksgiving has several benefits, but the aspect that I emphasized in yesterday’s sermon was the truth that thanksgiving establishes your blessings as permanent features of your life.

The Scriptural text for the sermon was taken from Luke 17:11 – 19.

Now on his way to Jerusalem, Jesus travelled along the border between Samaria and Galilee. As he was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy met him. They stood at a distance and called out in a loud voice, “Jesus, Master, have pity on us!”
When he saw them, he said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed.
One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. He threw himself at Jesus feet and thanked him – and he was a Samaritan.
Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?” Then he said to him,
“Rise and go; your faith has made you well.”

So many people were healed, but only one returned to say ‘thank you’ to Jesus. And He took note of that.
Why didn’t the other nine return to say ‘thank you’? What do you imagine our world would look like if every individual said ‘thank you’ for every blessing received, whether great or small?

My observation after several years of pastoral ministry and counseling is that most folks are focused on their misfortunes rather than on their blessings.

The frenetic race to keep up with the manipulative marketing tactics of our times has greatly diminished the capacity of many to appreciate God’s blessings. Most of us are so caught up in the frenzy of trying to get to our destinations that we fail to relish the beauty of the journey.

Today, I challenge you to take a break from your busy schedule, plans, and strategies to just say ‘thank you’ to God.

Yes, God expects you to say ‘thanks’.

He values our praise and thanksgiving, and is actually motivated by it!

Thanksgiving makes you whole!

I’ve always observed in my teachings, and I did so yesterday during the sermon, that thanksgiving makes you whole.
What does that mean?
Well, read what Jesus said to the guy that came back to say thanks,

And he said unto him, “Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole.” ~ verse 19

The other nine were cleansed, this guy was the only one that was made ‘whole’.
What’s the difference?

Well, think about it this way, you may be healed of asthma, yet still have the possibility of getting sick again with asthma. In this case, you’ve been ‘healed’ but not made ‘whole’.
But it is possible to lose even the tendency to get asthma again, such that even if you were to be placed under circumstances favorable to asthma, you still won’t get it. In this later case, you are made ‘whole’. In other words, your freedom from asthma becomes a permanent feature of your life regardless of your circumstances.

This is why I said yesterday that, thanksgiving establishes your blessings as permanent features of your life.

Have you said thanks to the Source of your blessings today?

God is the wind beneath our wings.  He is that invisible, spiritual, and eternal brain behind our achievements.

Have you said thanks for your friends and family? Do not take the people in your life for granted. People are God’s greatest assets, and hence His greatest gifts to us. Say thanks today for friends, family, colleagues, mentors, leaders, and caring neighbors.

Have you said thanks for your talents, skills, and abilities? Do that today.

Say thanks for all of the wonderful answers you’ve received in prayers. Say thanks for the help you’ve had over the years, and all the good things that have happened to you.

Give thanks today, to God.