Let’s go beyond just thanking God for the “stuff” He’s given us.

It’s always easy for me to rattle off a long list of things to be thankful for each Thanksgiving.  Truly, I have been blessed (I kind of hate that word, but I’ll use it) with so many ridiculously good things.  You have too.  I can say that very confidently.  I know we all have sucky parts to life, but the truth is that we all have been blessed far, far more than we deserve.

A few weeks ago, during a prayer time at church, I was really convicted by the way I say “thank you” to God.  90% of the time, when I’m saying “thank you” and communicating my gratitude to Him, I’m just listing off all the tangible blessings He’s given me– a job that I love, a beautiful house (and so many other things) that I own, Godly parents who love each other faithfully, great roommates, deep friendships.  I will even thank Him for things He’s teaching me, showing me, revealing to me.  And all of those things are great.

But it was during this prayer time that I realized, even if I didn’t have any of those tangible blessings I often rattled off, I have so much to be thankful for in the Trinity alone. 

What would it look like for me to communicate gratitude just for the character of God?  Or the love the Christ showed the world?  Or the gospel?  Or the fact that the Holy Spirit dwells within me and intercedes for me?

I challenge you today to think beyond just the stuff we have that we count as our blessings.  Absolutely, share those things with your family and friends as you celebrate Thanksgiving.  But find 10 minutes today to sneak away and be alone with the Creator of the Universe who’s throne is also open to you.  Spend 10 minutes in prayer thanking Him and practicing gratitude for who God is (tell him specific characteristics you’re thankful for), for Christ’s great love and sacrifice, for the gospel– that you and I are saved from our sin and have been redeemed, and for the way the Holy Spirit has worked in you.  Write it down.

Let’s think beyond our tangible, earthly blessings this year.  Let’s thank God for who He is, His goodness, justice, righteousness, holiness, and love for us.  As Paul wrote in Ephesians 1:3, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.”

Thank Him for those spiritual blessings in the heavenly places.  He’s given abundantly and richly, and too often we dismiss those so quickly to thank Him for our job, houses, cars, and friends.  Those are great gifts, but His spiritual blessings and who He is as our God and King… those are far greater.

O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever. [1 Chronicles 16:34]

I will give to the Lord the thanks due to his righteousness, and sing praise to the name of the Lord, the Most High. [Psalm 7:17]

“We give you thanks, Lord God Almighty, who are and who were, for you have taken your great power and begun to reign.” [Revelation 11:17]

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