Giving of ourselves to others is not something that comes naturally; we have to work at it. At times it is a difficult choice between serving ourselves and serving others. Take a moment and think about all those who have made the difficult choice to serve us and others. Our hearts should be filled with gratitude. Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
As we approach the Thanksgiving holiday our hearts should be turning to an attitude of gratitude. We have a time for us to reflect on all that God has blessed us with. We shouldn’t have to look very far before we find something we are thankful for. Who are you thankful for? I encourage you to take the time, go to them and let them know that their sacrifice for you was appreciated.
It is said many sins of omission can be covered by one acknowledgement of thanks. I would hope it doesn’t come to that but if it does, now is the time to overcome some of our omissions. Gratitude is intentional, we choose to be grateful. I’m sure you know some people that express their gratitude well, they are a joy to have in our lives.
We also know those who take our help for granted and never seem to notice how much effort someone puts into serving them. It takes significantly more effort to want to do something for those types of people. We may even go to the extreme of avoiding them, not including them in our lives.
The attitude of gratitude overcomes that, The Golden Rule in Scripture tells us;
Matthew 7:12; NLT; “Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you. This is the essence of all that is taught in the law and the prophets.
The implication here is that as followers of Christ we will live our life with this as our guide. That is hard, some people we really don’t care to help or serve. Some folks just rub us the wrong way. Jesus said; we can sum up all that is taught in the Bible by living by this simple statement; Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you.
We somehow think it is our place to teach others a lesson so we will show them by treating them without grace. I remind you to read that statement again. It doesn’t say treat others the way they treat you, it says treat others the way you want to be treated. Nowhere does it give us any authority to treat someone the way they treated us. We need to rise above that. We do that by having an attitude that is grateful for what has been done for us.
Romans 5:8; NLT; But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.
Who are those that serve us? Take a look around at the people we see every day. Our life is full of people who give of themselves for our benefit and the benefit of others. We need to look though, sometimes we have our focus on the next task without acknowledging those who helped us through the last one. I can think of several people who are dedicated to serving others. Wives and mothers come to mind.
Another I thought of is our military. They offer up their life to secure our freedom. From the birth of our country there have been those who value our freedom and the things that America stands for so much that they have offered their life for it.
Jesus especially came to mind. He came and gave His life so that we could have life. He paid the price with His sacrifice for our sins. God presented it to us as a gift. We need only to receive it. Now that is something to be thankful for. Are we thankful for the gift of eternal life? Paul helps us to put it into perspective.
Philippians 4:4-7; Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Rejoice means to remember what God has done. Remember how He has provided for you. Remember how he has blessed you. There are so many things to be thankful for, this passage reminds us to be thankful to God. When we do we will find peace, a peace that passes understanding.
There are so many folks that Lynda and I are thankful for. Our two ministry families come to mind, Christian Life Chapel and RWJM. You have lifted us up in prayer and provided for us. Every kind word, encouragement and effort made on our behalf helps us continue serving our Lord. We are grateful for so much.
Think about all the people who have helped you get to where you are and remember to thank them. Take time to recognize the men and women that have given so much for the freedom we enjoy. Take time to give thanks for the blessings from God. Living with thankfulness is the best place to be. Remember Jesus who gave his life for you. Be grateful for everything and thank God.