The Beginning of a Thankful Life
I’m a fearful person by nature. As a little girl I was afraid to let go of Daddy’s hand to take my first steps. I clung to my mother’s leg the first day of school. My fear is different now then when I was a child. I fear that all I love and hold dear will be taken away or that some debilitating, deadly disease will render me useless to my family and ministry. My fear leads to a spiral of worry and anxiety. I came to recognize that my fear stemmed from my unthankful view of God. You know your own downfalls, the things that plague you day-by-day, sometimes minute-by-minute. Perhaps, like me, you long for a miracle. I have begun to see victory the way Christ wants, like little seeds springing to life. And it’s all preceded by one word…thankfulness.
The Miracle of a Thankful Life
It’s interesting to me that our calendar marks the beginning of the holiday season with Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving precedes our celebration of the miracle of Christmas. I’m learning that miracles are often preceded by thanksgiving. Remember the words of Mary before the miracle of Christ’s birth, “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, (Luke 1:46–47)” She thanked her Lord for the privilege to serve her Redeemer. Her spirit of thanksgiving preceded the miraculous birth of the promised Messiah!
“In everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God (Philippians 4:6).” The predecessor to the miracle of answered prayer – thankful supplication. “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory… (1 Corinthians 15:57)” The predecessor to the miracle of victory – thanksgiving. Perhaps the greatest miracle of all time is the miracle of Redemption. Hours before He hung on a cross, despised by man and forsaken by His Father, what did our Savior do? “Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it… (1 Corinthians 11:23–24)” Our Savior gave thanks even in His darkest hour. What followed this prayer of thanksgiving changed the world forever – the miracle that defeated sin and death.
If we long for the grace and miracle of victory, we must possess the thankful spirit our Savior exemplified. So often we are impacted by a truth that has the power to truly change us, yet we fail to see any real change. We’re the same as before, maybe even more defeated.
The First Steps of Thankful Life
Brooke, recently learned to walk. Her first steps were awkward and marked by failure. Three months later, it’s more natural. Walking is becoming her way of life. Her fall back mode of transportation. In another year it will be second nature. Our God longs for us to walk with Him naturally. A manner not characterized by defeat, but marked by a full relationship with Him. I believe we must learn the language of thankfulness if we seek the miracle of a natural walk with God. Perhaps it will seem awkward at first, like Brooke’s first steps, but we must pursue it, or we’ll find our selves unchanged upon our confrontation with Truth.
The Challenge of Thankful Life
I’ve taken a challenge to create a list of 1,000 things I’m thankful for. The challenge is not original to me, but I really want to see a change in my view of God. I want to change the way I think of my Savior. Instead of looking through the lens of fear, I want to live looking through the lens of thankfulness expecting God’s miraculous victory. “I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord In the land of the living (Psalms 27:13 NASB).” This is the cure to despair and lack of victory. Seeing the goodness of our God and living the miracle of a thankful life.”
Join me and keep me accountable in living the miracle of thanksgiving. Not just this season, but everyday. Through the lens of thanksgiving I believe we can see the miracles God intends us to see and be!