It’s important we think to be thankful and joyful in all circumstances. The Bible sets that standard quite well. James says: “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds” (James 1:2). Paul tells us: “I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.” (Phil 4:11). So, as a Christian, I consider it imperative that we be thankful all the time, not just on this particular day. But, our traditions in this country have us look each year at the things we are most thankful for.
What are you most thankful for? Family? Friends? A good job? Security? Happiness? We too are thankful for all those things, we have at least one good job in this family right now, and it won’t be long before I’m working again I’m sure. And we are certainly thankful for our family, our friends and our church. We live in a wonderful free society where we have freedom to worship as we please. We are thankful for that and our privilege to share what we have with those who don’t have much.
It’s amazing to think that God chose us to become his children, and to serve others. We share a wonderful rich heritage with our Jewish brothers and sisters as we have been grafted into the family of Abraham through Jesus Christ, God’s own son. This all begs the question, that if we had been born in less fortunate circumstances, would Jesus really be enough? Is Jesus all that is needed? We hope we could say so! We are all tested and grown so that we become better than we were before, growing each and every day in the likeness of Jesus.
The most important thing to be thankful for is as Jesus said: “However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.” This is, for Christians, the bottom line. This implies that thankfulness is an attitude, and not an emotion. There are studies that show that people who have a good attitude live longer, are healthier, have more good things happen to them and so on. We are not to be whiners and complainers (very hard to do) but are to lead the way in showing how a person can have a thankful heart in all circumstances. How’s your heart attitude today?