“As you, therefore, have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving.” (Colossians 2:6-7, NKJV)
What word would you use to describe this past year? Unbelievable … unkind … harsh … brutal … unsettling … lonely …
Most if not all of us have our own thoughts about the events of this year from any number of perspectives. There was something odd about watching the Masters in November … and something even stranger and unsettling in not being able to meet with God’s people for Bible study and worship!
Our world is becoming more secular-minded with each new day! And what’s interesting, yeah, even more disturbing, is the effort to minimize and even eliminate God from society, from the schools where our children are being taught and educated, from our vocabulary … from life itself!
What a paradox! He who is the One who created this world and all that is in it … He who offered His “only begotten Son” on the Cross of Calvary to die and atone for the sins of all mankind … He who provides for each of us life, breath, and untold blessings … is being shunned by a thankless world!
“Abounding with thanksgiving … giving thanks in all things” … and numerous other phrases found throughout God’s Book are not just filler words for the pages God’s Spirit has revealed to us … they are indicative of the disposition of heart and mind that God expects to see in us!
We must guard against the world’s ever-increasing influence as the people of God! Rather than being “the salt and light” that is to influence the world … the world is winning the battle in far too many hearts and lives! Have you fallen victim to this influence that has been so carefully constructed by our enemy and adversary!
Yes, this Thanksgiving Day is upon us. But shouldn’t every day we wake up … seeing the sunshine through the window … smelling the coffee brewing … and endless other signatures of life … be a day of thanksgiving?
The commercialism of this world almost completely bypasses this national holiday. A day intended to stir our hearts to remember those who went before us to find the ‘brave, new world’ and of their sacrifices including the lives of some to establish a new nation.
Retail stores begin their onslaught of attention-getting for the next big holiday, Christmas … in August! We shake our heads … walk on by … but soon the pressure begins to mount, doesn’t it!
I love the smell of a turkey cooking in the oven ….. the taste of my wife’s wonderful cornbread dressing, pumpkin pie … and all the other treats that are to be enjoyed on this one day! I enjoy watching a little football, always have … but not quite as much as I used to … especially as it continues to be politicized!
I read an interesting illustration recently that goes something like this: There was a farmer who was visiting with his preacher and showing him around the property. They came upon one of his productive fields which in the past had been possessed by weeds and thorns … a real briar patch!
The preacher made the observation on what a beautiful and wonderful work the Lord had done with this piece of land! The farmer paused and offered this statement, “Preacher, you should have seen it when God had it all to Himself!”
We can become an independent, self-serving people if we are not careful!
The Apostle Paul was both reminding and encouraging the Colossian brethren to remember what got them to this point in their spiritual journey! Because of what God had done for them … when they reflected on the “good news of the gospel” and how it had changed their hearts and lives … they were to “abound in it with thanksgiving!”
So, as we sit around the dining room table with those we love and care for … let us do more than just say, “God is great, God is good, let us thank Him for our food, Amen” and then chow down … make our way to the recliner or couch and watch the game or games. Let each of “abound” … overflow with a deep appreciation for ALL that our gracious God blesses us with every new day! Express it!
The truth is … our very lives should be those of living praise and honor to our Lord!
C.S. Lewis made the following observations about us, ‘If you read history you will find that the Christians who did most for the present world were just those who thought most of the next.’ — Mere Christianity
Bill Fairchild, Jr