“Now He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness; you will be enriched in everything for all liberality, which through us is producing thanksgiving to God. For the ministry of this service is not only fully supplying the needs of the saints, but is also overflowing through many thanksgivings to God….Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!”
2 Corinthians 9:10-12; 15
As we read Scripture, we are continuously invited to offer thanks to God. To thank Him for His love, grace, protection, correction, provision, direction, and salvation! As we offer thanks to God let us do with our whole heart, and mind and strength, rather than out of compulsion or out of habit. (Although, at times, habits such as this can help us through those times of spiritual drought!)
One way to make sure we are earnestly giving thanks to God is to remember that we are eternal beings. If we allow the worries of today or the uncertainties of tomorrow to consume our thoughts, it can be difficult to give thanks. However, if we remember that we are made for an eternal relationship with our Creator God, and that He has made a way for us to be in His presence forever, then our present circumstances become much more bearable and the gift of Salvation becomes much more real!
The Psalmist, lead by the Holy Spirit, speaks these prophetic words about Jesus, and I think they help to illustrate the importance of an eternal perspective –
“Open to me the gates of righteousness; I shall enter through them, I shall give thanks to the Lord. This is the gate of the Lord; The righteous will enter through it. I shall give thanks to You, for You have answered me, And You have become my salvation. The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief corner stone. This is the Lord’s doing; It is marvelous in our eyes. This is the day which the Lord has made; Let us rejoice and be glad in it.” (Psalm 118:19–24, NASB95)
Paul was keenly aware of the eternal as he wrote to the Church at Corinth and for him this eternal view translated into the work and calling of mission and every day ministry. He wrote to them about their ability to support he and others in ministry, and thus, he gives thanks to God! He does so as one who recognizes that the gifts that are given are really from the Lord. He is reminding the Church at Corinth of their generosity and pens the famous line, “for God loves a cheerful giver” in verse 7.
During this Thanksgiving season, I encourage you to take a few moments as families and as individuals to think about the gift of salvation that God has made available through Jesus Christ. Without this gift, we are destined to eternal death. Without this gift, we have no hope for the future. Without this gift we have no chance of entering heaven. Without this gift our eternity is grim. Without this gift – there is no Thanksgiving.
So this Thanksgiving, as you carve the turkey and pass the dressing and prepare the pumpkin pie, remember to offer thanks from deep within, to your Lord and Savior. Many take the time to thank those who have gone before us to make this season possible, but we must also remember the One who has gone before us, taking our sin upon Himself, and then conquering death and promising life eternal! Without His gift there would be nothing to be thankful for.
Freedom, money, health, prosperity, calm, all these things pass! But, life in Christ is eternal if we place our trust in the God who has given us the “indescribable gift.” Thank Him for the gift of your salvation and eternal hope this Thanksgiving Season.