The season of Giving Thanks is upon us. I love November. I love Thanksgiving. It is one of my most favorite holidays. I love looking back on my year and seeing all that I have to be thankful for. I am thankful for the beautiful moments and the joy they bring. And I am thankful for the not so beautiful moments and the lessons they taught me.
Last year, our Scripture Writing plan focused on Thanksgiving and Gratitude. This year, I went through the Bible and found heroes that actually gave thanks and praise to God. These amazing men and women acknowledged the Lord for all He had done in their lives.
Their thanks often came in forms of praise and worship. Thanksgiving so often takes the form of a song, doesn't it? When there is just so much to thank God for, sometimes all we can do is burst out in song for the good things He has done.
These men and women are heroes of the Word, but they are also just normal human beings just like us. (Outside of Jesus who was God and man.) The thing about our Bible Heroes is that God uses ordinary people to do extraordinary things. This month, let us take a look at these ordinary men and women who thanked God for giving, saving, delivering, and providing.
In Exodus 14, God had delivered Moses and the Israelites from the hand of Pharaoh. The Red Sea opened up, and Moses and the Israelites walked through into safety. In Exodus 15, Moses gives thanks to God for the miraculous deliverance from his enemies. Moses and the Israelites were sure to give thanks to God for protection just as we should always acknowledge God's protection and deliverance in our lives.
Also in Exodus 15 is the song of Miriam, the older sister of Moses and Aaron. I love how the Scriptures chose to highlight Miriam's thanks to God. Her thanksgiving came in the form of a song and a dance. She celebrated the deliverance of the Israelites with her tambourine and joyful dancing. How wonderful would it be if we celebrated the Lord with song and dance? This Thanksgiving season, let us remember to make a joyful noise unto the Lord. (Psalm 98:4) For inspiration and ideas on songs of thanksgiving, click here.
In 1 Samuel 2, Hannah prays a beautiful prayer of Thanksgiving to the Lord because He gave her a son. After years of not being able to have children, Hannah and her husband conceived, and the future prophet Samuel was born. There is no deeper praise than that of thanks after a prayer has been answered. God will not always answer in our way or time, but He will answer. What a praise of Thanksgiving arises when He does.
You can read through the Psalms and find many of songs of thanksgiving penned by David's hand. He knew how to give thanks and praise to the Lord better than anyone. I chose to focus on his song of Thanksgiving found in 2 Samuel 22. David gives thanks to God from delivering him from the hands of all of his enemies and from the hands of Saul. Have you given thanks to the Lord for delivering you from all those set out to harm you? If not, take a moment, and like David, praise Him for what He has done!
Solomon, David's son, thanked God for all he had done to provide for Israel. His father, David, had wanted to build a proper temple to the Lord, but because David, "shed much blood and had made great wars", (1 Chronicles 22) God gave the duty to Solomon. In our writing this month, we will see Solomon's thanks to the Lord as he dedicated the temple.
AUTHOR OF PSALM 111
The author of Psalm 111 is unknown, but we clearly see a thankful heart through his words. This Psalm is a praise and thanks for all of God's wondrous works. It is a Psalm that reminds us that God's praise endures forever. Let us recite this Psalm at our Thanksgiving tables, to our families, and to our children as a reminder to thank God for who He is and what He has done!
MARY, The Mother of Jesus
In Luke 1, Mary gives a beautiful song of thanks in what has become known as The Magnificat. She gives thanks and praise to the Lord for choosing her to bear His Son. What an honor! Every single one of us is chosen to carry the Son of God into a lost and hurting world. Let us, like Mary, give thanks for the great honor of being chosen to share His light with the world.
THE ONE LEPER
In Luke 17, ten lepers came to Jesus to heal them. Jesus sent them to the priest, but before they could get to the priest, they were healed. All ten were healed, however, only one of the lepers came back to thank Jesus. The one who thanked the Lord wasn't a Jew, but a Samaritan. Samaritans were seen as outsiders and foreigners in Israel's sight and yet it was this Samaritan Leper, who came back and thanked Jesus for the gift of new life and a new character.
In our Inscribe the Word Scripture writing last month, we inscribed the Book of Philippians. We see, in this book, see Paul's amazing relationship with the church at Philippi. In Philippians 1, Paul gave thanks to God for the believers in Philippi because they never let him down. They were a constant source of spiritual and financial encouragement. Be sure this Thanksgiving, that you are giving thanks for those who bless your life. Take a note from Paul and thank God often upon every remembrance of those who have blessed you.
What better example of someone who gave thanks to God than our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Let's take a look at Jesus' example in two Scriptures. One was in John 6 when He thanked God for blessing the food at the feeding of the 5,000. The other was in John 11 when He thanked God for hearing His prayer at the resurrection of Lazarus. Jesus is the ultimate example of one who knew how to thank His Father for hearing and answering His prayers.
This Thanksgiving season and always, may your heart be filled with Thanksgiving to our King of kings and Lord of lords. May these amazing Bible heroes encourage you to give thanks to God for who He is and for all He has done!
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