1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
16 Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
This week, millions in the Western world will celebrate an American holiday in the name of thankfulness. This treasured tradition was birthed in the application of spiritual disciplines such as fasting, prayer, and thanksgiving. In 1621, when the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock, they were grateful just to be alive. Not long after, they faced decimation by the inhospitable environment and frigid winter temperatures. The native Wampanoag Indians helped them to acclimate to their new world. After many trials, they survived and celebrated with a three-day feast thanking God for all He had done.
From Praises to Pumpkin Pie
Today, in a post-Christian America, Thanksgiving looks much different. Like many other aspects of our culture, the secularization of this once consecrated holiday has descended into a shallow form of itself. It’s safe to assume that as a nation, we’ve never been more ungrateful. Consumerism has consumed us, the Internet has desensitized us, and our appetites for godlessness is even bigger than it is for Turkey. Instead of glory, honor, and praise to God for lavishly pouring out grace on His people, the concern has shifted to NFL, food, and Black Friday.
Unlike the Pilgrims who were forced to till the ground for physical and spiritual food, modern America has grown fat by being the apathetic benefactors of others’ labor. No longer are we a people desperately leaning on God and each other for provision. Instead, we have grown increasingly proud and entitled. A sin that has driven us far from the humble beginnings of the brave men and women whose blood and tears laid the foundations of this great country.
I Am, I AM
For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened.
Of all the fleshly and worldly compulsions that confront a believer, there is hardly a more polarizing offense to the Lord than ingratitude. Ingratitude suffocates the life of joy and freedom available through the great sacrifice of Jesus. Christians often act more like spoiled children than a peculiar people and royal priesthood. We pout and whine as self-love coaxes us into a false sense of entitlement before God. Who do I think I am? And therein lies the problem; I think that I am, “I AM.”
No matter how godly a person is, on some level we all think this way. Even the most pious believers still struggle with a deep-rooted pride that results in the self-aggrandizing that deceives us into thinking we are the center of the universe. Before Christ, the world told us that we could be the masters of our lives. This old-school tactic is precisely how the Devil deceived Eve and we still haven’t completely abandoned this notion. We pray to God to use us according to His will but feel slighted when He doesn’t do it our way.
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Source: Christian Post