Tuesday, December 4, 2018
Tuesday, November 6, 2018
“Attitude of Gratitude”, “A Thankful Heart is a Happy Heart”, “Thankfulness is The Beginning of Happiness.” These are just some of the quotes you see after a quick search about thankfulness. On the surface it appears thankfulness is a motivational and inspirational concept to “turn that frown upside down” and get our “half empty glass, half full”. Thankfulness has much more substance than that.
In the United States, thankfulness is part of our national heritage. The creation of our Thanksgiving holiday is rooted in our European Pilgrim forefathers who came to America in the early 1600s. Their practice of thanksgiving feasts came from their religious faith. They worshiped God, were followers of Jesus and read their Bible. One passage they no doubt read was Ephesians 5:20, “. . . [give] thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ . . .”
The whole idea of thankfulness has religious origins, found in our Creator. To separate thankfulness from any mention about God and keep it merely as a motivational topic is to miss the real deep and rich meaning.
The word “thanks” comes from the words “good” and “grace”. It denotes two parties. A giver and receiver. The giver shows some kindness and the receiver responds with thankfulness to the good grace shown him or her.
In our western culture we act as if there was just one party. We say, “Be thankful” or “I am thankful.” But I ask, “To whom?” We, as the receivers, are saying “thanks”, but we are acting as if it is in a vacuum. There was a giver. I argue, based on the truthfulness of the Bible, that God is the giver of all good things.
There are unexpected blessings, kind acts, mysterious happenings that we may attribute to medicine, science, chance, fate or simply to nice people. But behind it all is an invisible God showing you His goodness and grace. Give Him thanks. This is a message for the committed believer and for the nonreligious skeptic.
Talking about thanking God when things go our way, is one thing, but what about in times of suffering and hardship? In those times we often turn and blame God, yet, His goodness and grace is there in bad times, too. Because the pain blurs our vision, we often need God’s help, or the help of others, to see His goodness.
Acknowledgement is a key word in thanks. In personal relationships, we should personally acknowledge the good someone brought us; with God it is the same. Giving thanks is acknowledging His grace in the fabric of our lives – during the good times and bad.
And the greatest act of kindness God has shown – is the giving of Jesus, His only Son. Jesus’ life, death and rising again, gave you an opportunity for new life through forgiveness of all your sin. He gave to the world without being asked and in the face of disbelief and opposition. One day you will stand before Him and be judged. Will you have believed and given thanks for Jesus or will you refuse and experience God’s wrath? Open your spiritual eyes and see God’s goodness shown to you in Christ,then follow Him with all your heart.
A prayer for you to pray– “Lord God, help me to see your goodness and grace in my life, in both the good times and bad. Open my eyes that I might give you thanks and praise. In Jesus’ name. Amen.”
Wednesday, October 3, 2018
Tuesday, September 4, 2018
Tuesday, July 31, 2018
Tuesday, July 3, 2018
Since the late 1800’s, which began the industrial age, America has seen incredible growth. The success has changed America’s character. Her pride has grown into arrogance. Her increased knowledge has questioned the need for God. Her advancements in technology have made her like a god and her hi-tech weapons have replaced God.
The principle of abundance leading to a denial of God is a predictable pattern. When riches, power and success mount there is a quiet shift in the heart of a nation, that when left unchecked, can lead to its downfall.
Who is America’s greatest enemy? Some other nation, terrorists or a conglomerate of cyber warriors? Our greatest enemy is – we the people.
The lure of money and power is becoming our Great Destroyer. Its deceptive appeal has caused us to think too highly of ourselves. It has created a false sense of security bringing us to believe we are a nation that is indestructible and indispensable to the world. We have been willingly seduced by prosperity giving birth to the children of ease, complacency and immorality.
Let us learn from the downfall of ancient kingdoms like Rome, Egypt, Greece and the once vast British Empire. Mere common sense says if we continue down the path we are on, America will eventually implode.
Despite the growing number of atheists within our borders, the Lord God does exist, and He is our only hope. Not political parties, legislation or changes in the economy. Let us examine our ways and do something about it. We must humble ourselves and stop our power hunger, corrupt and immoral practices. We must make peace with God and with one another. This cannot be done through multi-faith efforts or by starting an organization. This turn around can only be done through our faith in the Creator God, and His only Son. Let us plead for Him to pour out a heaven-sent spiritual revival to sweep border to border.
A prayer for you to pray– Lord God, I see evil and lawlessness across our land. We desperately need you to send a move of your Spirit upon us. I admit my own wrong doings and how I have contributed to the condition of our country. Forgive me Lord for what I have done. Oh God, come upon our land. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Tuesday, June 5, 2018
Wednesday, May 2, 2018
I urge you to embrace full-on, radical belief in Christ. Go beyond superficial words and the mere window dressings of religion, like Jesus did, when He went to the cross and shed His blood for you. He counted the cost and laid His life down. Do the same. Count the cost and believe in Him with all your heart.
Tuesday, April 3, 2018
A prayer for you to pray–Lord God, search my own heart. Let the change in my city begin with me. Point out if I have hurt people physically or with my words. I am sorry Lord for how I have treated others. Rid the evil within me. Forgive me for what I have done. Make me into a kind and loving person by your power. In Jesus’ name. Amen.