Thanksgiving Day is right around the corner, so it’s time for the “Obligatory Thanksgiving CaseStudy”—sort of like the “Obligatory Thanksgiving Sermon” that you always hear the Sunday before Thanksgiving day, and the “Obligatory prayer of Thanksgiving” that many will pray before pigging out at their Thanksgiving tables.
Now, that may seem a bit harsh. Thanksgiving, you say, is a good thing, and I ought not be so cynical about it. Well, you’re right. “Thanksgiving” IS a good thing. And, so is “Thanksgiving Day.” But, the two are entirely different things.
“Thanksgiving Day” is the last Thursday in November, a day that we have celebrated as a National holiday ever since Abraham Lincoln called the nation to a “National day of day of Prayer and Thanksgiving to Almighty God” in 1863. In our generation, it is a day when many Americans celebrate our abundant blessings by stuffing as many of them in their mouths at one sitting as possible. Then, they watch football, and/or fall asleep.
“Thanksgiving”, on the other hand, is an ATTITUDE. “Thanksgiving” is something that ought to be a fixture in the life of a Christian. We ought to give thanks with every breath that we breathe, every step that we take, and every heartbeat. “Thanksgiving” ought to be such a normal part of our lives as believers in Jesus Christ that an event like “Thanksgiving Day” loses its special glitter, and we just do the same things we do any other day, just in a more celebrative way.
Really being Thankful for all of the things that God has done for you is a lifestyle, not a special event. Oh, there’s nothing intrinsically wrong with the special event, but if it really stands out as a “Thanksgiving Day,” you’re missing out on one of the greatest sources of peace and joy in the Christian life.
“Thanksgiving” is an essential element in an intimate relationship with God, and you can’t have that special closeness of relationship without it.
Give Thanks, with a grateful heart—every day, not just on “Thanksgiving Day.”