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Give Thanks

As a parent to three little ones, I want to teach my children consistency. You’ve heard the saying “consistency is key”, and I believe that’s spot on. The things in our life in which we are most consistent bear the greatest fruit. From our time in God’s Word, to exercise, to teaching my 2-year-old to say “please” when asking for something, consistency seems to help things stick and solidify in our minds.

I always find it funny as the holidays approach, we work extra hard to remind ourselves and others to be grateful and to give during this next month and a half. I’m not talking about our church budget (although we would love for you to support our church!). I’m talking about how we take the extra time and resources in the season of Thanksgiving and Christmas to give of our finances and resources to help those in need and go out of our way to be thankful and kind.

In a world where criticism and analytical processes seem to reign, being thankful and giving seem to sit on the sideline until the end of the year. Did you know that almost 1/3 of all giving for non-profits happens in the month of December?! That’s crazy! Again, we are hyper aware of giving and thankfulness in these next couple weeks leading up to Christmas, but as followers of Jesus I believe we are called to do this all year long.

Paul wrote in 1 Thessalonians 5:18.
“…give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
As a father I want my children to be thankful through every season and every time. And yet that’s HARD WORK. My children are a direct reflection of the want more thinking that causes so much discontentment in our lives. But it’s not just my children, it’s me. Believing that if I just had a little more money, a little more time, a little more room for such and such I would be more satisfied and content.

I really believe that this is a huge fight that we must wage war against in our souls. To truly be thankful in all circumstances is not easy and Paul says that it can only be found “in Christ Jesus”. True thankfulness and contentment can only be found in Him. What a wrestling match!

I’ve begun a practice with my daughter whenever she has a hard time leaving a fun place or activity that we’ve been able to enjoy. We pray this simple prayer of “thank you Jesus for the fun we’ve had”.  It doesn’t always initiate a good response out of her, but my prayer and hope for her is that she recognizes that Jesus gives us these amazing opportunities and that joy is not only found in single moments, but in continual service and love with Jesus.

So, this holiday season how are you being thankful? Not just that one or two times a year, but how does thankfulness bear itself in all seasons and circumstances for you? I pray you find joy and thankfulness in these next weeks and have a Happy Thanksgiving, but more so, that you find joy, contentment, and thankfulness in all circumstances in Christ Jesus!

In Him,