What are you giving thanks to the Lord for this Thanksgiving season?
The psalmist presents a charge in Psalm 118:1 “Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.”
For us, the message of this Psalm can be a source of strength and consolation in times of trials and tribulations. When we’re down and discouraged and we read Psalm 118, we’re reminded that the Lord is good, His mercy is unending, and in spite of what we’re going through, we need to give Him thanks.
Count Your Blessings.
When upon life’s billows you are tempest-tossed
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost
Count your many blessings, name them one by one
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done
Count your blessings, name them one by one
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one
*Count your many blessings, see what God hath done
[*And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.]
Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, every doubt will fly
And you will keep singing as the days go by
So, amid the conflict whether great or small
Do not be discouraged, God is over all;
Count your many blessings, angels will attend
Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end
Take time to count your blessings and give thanks to the Lord.
Scripture: Psalm 118:1-29, Psalm 136:1-26
Prayer: Thank you Lord for the goodness and mercy you have shown me throughout my life. God, you have blessed me beyond measure. To simply say thank you seems so inadequate. Father, I choose to live my life as an expression of gratitude to you. I love you Lord Jesus. Amen
Are you known by God?
I’m not asking if you know God, but does God know you? This world is full of people who claim to know God, and the truth is they may very well know a lot about God, yet not really know Him. In other words, they are not known by God, because it takes more than knowing about God to actually know HIm.
Jesus says in Matthew: “Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Only those who actually do the will of my Father in heaven will enter. On judgment day many will say to me, ‘Lord! Lord! We prophesied in your name and cast out demons in your name and performed many miracles in your name.’ But I will reply, ‘I never knew you. Get away from me, you who break God’s laws.” Matthew 7:21-23 NLT
However, for those who are known by God, Paul writes to the Corinthians: “For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known”
1 Corinthians 13:12.
God chose you.You did nothing to earn His favor. He has set His affections on you. He took note of you and made you His own. As a believer in Christ Jesus, in Ephesians 1:4 we are told: “Even before He made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in His eyes.” God’s choosing us for salvation is truly an act of grace.
We bring nothing to the table with God. We have nothing that would attract Him to us. There is no earthly reason He should look at us, but He does. Being known by God should give us great comfort in the trials and tribulations of life
Listen to David’s description of what it means to be fully known by God: “O Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me. You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my thoughts even when I’m far away. You see me when I travel and when I rest at home. You know everything I do. You know what I am going to say even before I say it, Lord . You go before me and follow me. You place your hand of blessing on my head. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too great for me to understand!”
How wonderful to rest in the assurance of being known.
Galatians 4:8-9. Psalm 139:1-6, John 10:14-15, 27
Father, thank you for choosing me...for loving me throughout all eternity. Lord, I’ve done nothing that deserves your love. Your grace is overwhelming and I don’t want to ever take it for granted. Help me to know you more and more until that day when we come face to face. Amen
Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you simply didn’t know what to do? Maybe you have faced difficult circumstances…attacks from the enemy that have resulted in an overwhelming fear. Fear that blinds you to any possible solution.
The story of Jehoshaphat in 2 Chronicles 20 gives us a good example of what to do when we feel powerless and don’t know what to do.
'“And now see what the armies of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir are doing. You would not let our ancestors invade those nations when Israel left Egypt, so they went around them and did not destroy them. Now see how they reward us! For they have come to throw us out of your land, which you gave us as an inheritance. O our God, won’t you stop them? We are powerless against this mighty army that is about to attack us. We do not know what to do, but we are looking to you for help.”’ 2 Chronicles 20:10-12
Jehoshaphat prayed and acknowledged to the Lord that he didn’t know what to do. The New King James version then says: “but our eyes are upon You.” It is amazing what happens when we add God to our perspective.
God responded to Jehoshaphat’s prayer saying: “Do not be afraid! Don’t be discouraged by this mighty army, for the battle is not yours, but God’s. Tomorrow, march out against them. You will find them coming up through the ascent of Ziz at the end of the valley that opens into the wilderness of Jeruel. But you will not even need to fight. Take your positions; then stand still and watch the Lord ’s victory. He is with you, O people of Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid or discouraged. Go out against them tomorrow, for the Lord is with you!” 2 Chr 20:15-17
We find in Hebrews 12:2: “And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith.
Facing our fears is best done by facing Jesus and keeping our eyes on Him.
Where are you looking for help?
2 Chronicles 20:1-30, Hebrews 12:1-3, Hebrews 13:8, Romans 8:28
Lord Jesus, I turn my eyes upon you, looking full in your wonderful face, and as I do the things of earth grow strangely dim in the light of your glory and grace. Thank you, Jesus. Amen
As a born again believer in Jesus Christ, did you know that you are an elected representative? You were elected by one vote...only one vote was cast...only one vote was needed...Jesus.
“You didn’t choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name.”
John 15:16 NLT
You’ve been chosen...elected by Jesus himself to be His representative. Paul reminds the Colossians: “Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts. And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father.” Colossians 3:16-17 NLT
Paul says, “whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus.” In other words, all my actions and words should represent the Lord Jesus... everything I do and say.
Think about the things that you did and said last week…yesterday…this morning. Was everything reflective of you as a representative of Jesus Christ?
Think about this coming week, how will you represent the Lord Jesus?
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” Proverbs 3:5-6
Colossians 3:16-17, 2 Corinthians 5:19-21, 1 Corinthians 16:13-14, Philippians 2:14, Philippians 4:12-13, Psalm 37:5, Ephesians 5:1
Lord Jesus, may I reflect and represent you through my actions as well as my words in every aspect of my life. Amen
Bro. Joe Metts