Americans have a government holiday on the fourth Thursday in November. We call it Thanksgiving and it’s a time we observe “a day of public thanksgiving and prayer,” for a bountiful harvest and blessings from the last year. Smithsonian
From the end of November until January 1, there’s an abundance of food, gifts, and celebrations with family and friends. For most, we approach the holiday with a heart of thanks for a roof over our heads, clothes to wear, food on the table, and freedom from persecution.
As I ponder the many things that I’m thankful for this year, I can’t bypass the privilege I have to choose. I’m not rich, but I have everything I need. My home is not luxurious, but I live in a house of my choosing. For the most part, when I go to the grocery store I have the luxury to fill my cupboards with foods of my choosing. I don’t take for granted God’s abundant supply of daily provisions. I know that I’m blessed.
Nevertheless, what is of greatest importance is recognizing that God doesn’t define provisions strictly to material wealth, or lack thereof. No matter how our blessings look, Peter shows us that we should strive for a “generous provision” to add to our faith moral excellence, knowledge, self-control, patience, endurance, godliness, brother affection, and love for everyone. 2 Peter 1:5
The result: “Then God will give you a grand entrance into the eternal Kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” 2 Peter 1:11
You may be reading this and say, “no, I don’t have options.” In fact, you may say, “I’m out of options.” You’re living paycheck-to-paycheck and you don’t know how you will provide for your family. You may be locked behind prison walls or feel as though you’re living in a prison being told when to eat, when to shower, and when to go to bed.
Sometimes we have to look a little harder to see what is good and keep our eyes on God. A heart of genuine thanks and praise to God is the foundation to learning how to be content and to find hope when all we see and feel is hopelessness.
It won’t be easy, “But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently. Romans 8:24-25 NIV
The day will come when Jesus “will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.” Revelation 21:4
In the meantime, worship God the way the angels in heaven do, “Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and strength belong to our God forever and ever! Amen.” Revelation 7:12
My prayer of blessing for each of you:
“I pray that from God’s glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.” Ephesians 3:16-19
God, open doors of opportunity for each reader to proclaim the gospel, regardless of cultural challenges. I pray for protection over those who are risking their lives to share the gospel. “May the Lord bless you and protect you. May the Lord smile on you and be gracious to you. May the Lord show you his favor and give you his peace.” Numbers 6:24-26
“By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know him, the one who called us to himself by means of his marvelous glory and excellence. And because of his glory and excellence, he has given us great and precious promises. These are the promises that enable you to share his divine nature and escape the world’s corruption caused by human desires.
In view of all this, make every effort to respond to God’s promises. Supplement your faith with a generous provision of moral excellence, and moral excellence with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with patient endurance, and patient endurance with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love for everyone." 2 Peter 1:11
May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Romans 16:20
Related posts: The Strength in Thanks
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