by Fred C. Wilson III
November 16, 2012
“Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.’’
A simple ‘thank you’ goes a long way. It says a lot about a person. A grateful attitude smoothes over many of life’s tough spots; being thankful enhances a person’s ability to appreciate the gift received and respect the gift giver. Having an authentic sense of gratitude opens the possibility of receiving continued blessings and greater benefits from the gift giver. Anyway you look at it gratitude is a win-win situation for all parties involved.
Thanksgiving Day is a national holiday. It’s a harbinger of the Holiday Season that special time of each year when consumers spend beyond their monitory means as they waltz merrily into debt. The Yule season is that time of the year when binge drinking takes on an air of ‘respectability;’ after all ‘tis the season.’ Incidents of domestic violence and road fatalities soar as drunken driver’s plough the roads before being ploughed under it in cemetery plots. During the annual bacchanal rarely do people stop to give thanks to the greatest gift giver of all, Almighty God. If for any other reason why He should be praised is that God is God. Psalm 24:8-10 (ESV) says: “Who is this King of glory? The Lord, strong and mighty, the Lord, mighty in battle! Lift up your heads, O gates! And lift them up, O ancient doors that the King of glory may come in. Who is this King of glory? The Lord of hosts, he is the King of glory!” God is the author of everything good hence deserving of our highest praise, thanksgiving, honor, glory, blessing, and loyalty; simply put God is God; End of story.
Everything comes from the Almighty. Reader, think about all the gifts you have; your wife/husband, family, friends, job, good health, use of your limbs, ability to see, make love, taste, smell, walk, sit, lie down, stand tall in stressful situations, drive your car, eat, drink, laugh, smile, cry it all comes from the Hand of God. Your money in the bank, investment portfolio, but most of all YOU all are gifts from God. Reader, you can’t blow your nose unless God gives you the ability to purchase the napkins, raise a napkin to your nose, blow, and wipe. Yesterday at the time of this writing I visited a sick relative at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital. The very act of seeing him struggle to lift his hand to place it in to mine required a herculean effort on his part. In little things and in large we owe everything to our good God. We only own our sins since that was never part of God’s Plan.
Thank the Lord for making YOU; I certainly thank the Lord for making me. You didn’t have to be created but you were. Think all of the billions of abortions natural (miscarriages) and ‘legal’ (criminal), the thousands of ‘manufactured’ people human beings discarded every year in various embryonic stages of their development on the altar of weird science. Any one of them could have easily been you but by God’s grace you’re here reading these words. You could have died from drowning, in auto accidents, shot in road rage incidents, your plane could have crashed into Lake Michigan last time you went back home, or you could have been horribly maimed in some accident you narrowly avoided but for the Grace of God. So many bad things could have sunk your tiny ship of life had it not been for Divine intervention. Think about it and thank God it didn’t happen.
Reader, if you’re having a hard time finding things to be thankful for read this. This prayer of thanks comes from a teenaged girl I’ll call Tina who lives in Georgia: “Dear Daddy, I thank you for forgiving all the sins that I have done that you don’t approve of and making me whole again. Lord I praise your name daily and I always imagine me walking by your side and how it will feel so good to be in Heaven with you. Lord I thank you for my family, friends, and all the things you have made. Lord you have satisfied my
soul and cleansed me with your BLOOD. Without you, there is no me. Lord I praise your name and I want to be with you. Your Lovely Daughter, Tina.”
Suzie from Florida writes: “I thank You Lord for my birth. I thank You Lord for the mother who gave me up. I thank You Lord for the mother who took me in.”
Idriss Nyonga from Cameroon writes “I thank God for the gift of three wonderful boys, a loving wife and devoted mother, a family home we own, and the blessings of good health. There is still so much more to thank God for, the list could go on, and on, and on…”
Oprah Winfrey’s opening quote says it all however I’d like to write about her last sentence ‘If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.’ Oprah is right on target! Greed kills; look around you at how corporate/political greed has killed the spirit of America. But don’t go that far. Examine the man/woman in the mirror: that expensive new car that your jealous neighbors wish they had…your ‘trophy’ wife/husband that you show off at parties/family events…your high powered job that rakes in $$$$$ by the barrel…your coveted standing in your community; think of the envious people wishing they were you. Greedy, miserly, and jealous people are never happy, never satisfied, never grateful, since they have never enough.
Republic of Congo Catholic Bishop Louis Ngomo Okitenbo summed it best when he said; “we give thanks to God for many blessings: God Increases His Blessings on those who are grateful, those who recognize His Power. People who know that God is the Owner and Possessor of everything express their inner gratefulness for good health, knowledge, wisdom, love and for God’s Guidance. Knowing their weaknesses and being humble before God, they give thanks to Him for every blessing granted. The more we give thanks to God, the more we experience his kindness and His Goodness, His mercy and compassion. God grants even more health and power to those who give thanks to Him for the good health and strength they have. God bestows even more knowledge and property to those who are grateful for their knowledge or wealth. True believers remain grateful to God even under harshest conditions.” Here’s the prayer I use about this time of year at family gatherings:
‘O God our loving Creator, You bless us with abundant life. On This Thanksgiving Day, we come before you with hearts full of gratitude for your many gifts. We are grateful for love of family, friendship, for faith. Help us to grow in love, and open our hearts more deeply to the needs of our neighbor. May we share with them what you have given to us. Praise and Thanksgiving to you, O Lord now and forever! Amen.’