With thanksgiving on my mind, it seems that every word of thanks that appears in my daily Bible reading seems to jump off the page at me. And I'm noticing something.
Biblical thanksgiving always flows from the observation of the works of the LORD.
"I will give thanks to the LORD with my whole heart, . . .
Great are the works of the LORD,
studied by all who delight in them. . .
The works of his hands are faithful and just
all his precepts are trustworthy." (Psalm 111:1,2, 7)
"We ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers, as is right, because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of every one of you for one another is increasing." (2 Thessalonians 1:3)
With Christ, giving thanks is an act of worship, of praise, of submission to the Almighty God, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen.
Without Him, it could be a list of self-congratulation. A Pollyanna glad-game. A band-aid over the wound of life's search for meaning.
With Christ, a month of studying His works and giving Him thanks for them prepares us to celebrate the greatest work of all, the hinge-point of history that is Christmas. God with us.
For those without Him, perhaps a month of giving thanks will prepare hearts to unwrap the gift of Hope and Peace with God this Christmas.