When you do a word study in the Bible on the word thankfulness, you get the sense that you are giving something to whoever has given something to you; that someone being God. Giving is a deliberate action that is thought about before acted upon.
The Bible tells us over and over to be thankful and to give thanks to God. Therefore, when you sit down and think about what you can be thankful about, think about your health, your family, your material possessions, and your freedom. These are the things that come from God, and these are things that we as Americans take for granted every day; in other countries they are hard to come by.
Here is a short list that you can start with to thank God for:
1. The Bible
2. Answered prayer
5. The Holy Spirit
6. Your Church
7. The ability to see, walk, taste, and smell
8. A place to live, clothes, food, transportation
9. Ability to read
10. Lessons that He has been teaching you in your life
11. The people in your life (friends, neighbors, family, and fellow workers)
12. Pastors, missionaries, and spiritual leaders
Above all always give thanks to God for His perfect gift to us all for all time, Jesus Christ. Who died on the cross and was resurrected the third day so that whosoever believes in Him will have eternal life. The greatest gift of all is Jesus for the forgiveness of our sins.
So whether you are spending time with family this Thanksgiving Day, or you are going through a rough period in your life, remember that all things work together for good for those who love God, those who are called according to His purpose. And even in rough periods we can be thankful for the good things that have blessed us in the past.
But before you begin to give thanks today, take a minute and think about the following verses:
- 1 Tim 4:4 “For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with gratitude.”
- Jam 1:17 “Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.”
- 1Thes 5:18 “[I]n everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
- 1 Cor 2:14 “But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place.”
- 1 Tim 1:12 “I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because He considered me faithful, putting me into service.”
- 2 Tim 1:3 “I thank God, whom I serve with a clear conscience the way my forefathers did, as I constantly remember you in my prayers night and day.”
- Heb 13:15 “Through Him then, let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that give thanks to His name.”
- Eph 5:20 “[A]lways giving thanks for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God, even the Father.”
When you sit down at the dinner table, give back to God by praising Him and thanking Him for all that He has done and is yet to do. Amen!