Thursday Reflection

26th November 2020

'for He is good!'

"Praise the LORD!
 Oh, give thanks to the LORD,
 for He is good!
 For His mercy
 endures forever."

.....Psalm 106:1

Today is Thanksgiving Day,
a federal holiday
in the United States,
celebrated on the
fourth Thursday of November.

Last evening,
I watched a powerful
documentary drama on BBC4
telling the true story
of the pilgrim's voyage
to the New World
on the Mayflower
and their subsequent life.

I was moved by the harshness
of the voyage, and the
conditions they encountered
in their first years of settlement;
the deprivation and suffering,
yet they remained faithful.

I was humbled by their faith
and commitment to God.
After their first harvest
at the Plymouth Planation
in October 1621,
the Pilgrims prepared a feast
in thanksgiving to God
for his provision.

This feast lasted three days,
and was attended by 90 Native Americans
and 53 Pilgrims.

Thanksgiving has been celebrated
nationally on and off since 1789;
Autumn or early winter feasts continued
sporadically in later years,
first as an impromptu
religious observance
and later as a civil tradition.

The date was officially fixed, by law,
on the fourth Thursday
in November in 1941

God is good to us;
we appreciate many amazing
benefits of this beautiful world
so it's good for us to show
our gratitude for our food,
and whatever peace,
health and wealth that we enjoy,
whilst remembering
the suffering of those
less fortunate than ourselves.

But why does God allow us
to have so much?
Why is he such a generous God?

We must remember,
all the way back in Genesis 1,
that God did not create the world
to be hostile to humankind,
but to nurture and please us.

When Jesus came to earth,
he said,'

I have come that
they may have life,
and have it to the full.'

..... John 10:10.

We should show our gratitude
for his creation;
for God allows us to enjoy life
so that we can understand
his overwhelming love for us;
and, as Jesus commanded,
love one another.

Henry Van Dyke, an American author,
educator, diplomat, and clergyman wrote;
   "Gratitude is the inward feeling
   of kindness received.
   Thankfulness is the natural
   impulse to express that feeing.
   Thanksgiving is the following
   of that impulse."

Thanksgiving is a superpower.
It enables us to see past our
experiences and embrace
how God is moving.

Not only are thankful people
able to draw strength
from gratitude,
but they're also able to
empower others as well.

God doesn't just want to bless us
so we can meet our own needs,
but he does it so we can meet
the needs of others.

As we give generously
in Jesus' name,
the beneficiaries thank God,
not us.

Although we don't have a
Thanksgiving day
here in the U.K.
we really don't need one;
we can, and should,
give thanks to God every day.

Let's start every day
with praise and thanksgiving.