On the fourth Thursday of November, here in the United States, we celebrate Thanksgiving, a national holiday honoring the early settlers and Native Americans who came together to have a historic harvest feast. As my middle daughter said, “this Thanksgiving Day is going to be different.”
We can all agree with that statement. With a pandemic in our midst, not only affecting Americans but people around the world, are you able to give thanks to God in the midst of this pandemic?
We all have been affected by this pandemic. Whether you have lost loved one’s due to the virus, or have someone fighting the virus in the hospital right now, or maybe you lost your job because of this pandemic, or your children and you are struggling with online learning. We cannot travel, go to our favorite restaurant or visit loved ones because we don’t want to spread the virus. Our plans for this year were completely shattered, postponed, or canceled altogether. We are not able to hug each other or see our smiles, and this Thanksgiving is definitely different because of the restrictions on large gatherings. And I ask again, are you able to give thanks to God in the midst of this pandemic?
The Bible tells us in the first letter the Apostle Paul wrote to the Thessalonians, “Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” Yes, you heard it right, “give thanks in all circumstances.”
You might think, “what does the Thessalonians and Paul know about pandemics?” They may not have experienced a pandemic in their time, but the new believers had stood fast in the Lord despite persecution. I think Paul’s words of encouragement can apply to us today.
Give thanks in all circumstances, why? Because God the creator of heaven and earth has been generous and good to us. He gives us life and sustains our lives. As believers, we acknowledge and remember that all good things come from God. Our lives, our homes, families, work, friends, and all the rest come from God. He is the giver of all.
Are you able to give thanks to God in the midst of this pandemic? With God’s help, we can. This Thanksgiving Day and this year is different, but even in the midst of all our challenges, we can be thankful to God not just one day, but every day. And if you, for some reason cannot find the words or the strength to give thanks, then say this prayer with me: Father in heaven, life is hard and I cannot find words of thanks. Help me find gratitude toward you in the midst of all the challenges I am facing. In the name of Jesus, Amen.
Friends, I encourage you to give thanks to God in all circumstances, to “live in peace with each other . . . encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone. Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else.” These are awesome words to live by.
Make sure to share in the comments, What are you thankful for?
Also, if this blog encouraged you, please share it with your friends on social media or by email. Have a blessed Thanksgiving!