Being Thankful in an Upside Down World
Updated: Nov 26, 2020
Thanksgiving has always been one of my favorite holidays. Not just because I love the food, but because there is something about the tone of Thanksgiving that has always resonated with me. Perhaps my love for the holiday is a result of reflection over the years of memories laughing and spending time with family and cooking together. Maybe it has something to do about the upcoming Christmas season. I can't quite put my finger on it, but I can say that there is something about this season that always makes my heart warm.
And yes, even in this current climate, my heart is still warm this season. Because no matter what is going on, my Lord is still on His throne. And this brings me comfort. It brings me warmth. I believe I even mentioned this in my last blog post, but I digress. We all need to relish in that warmth this year. It's cold outside, friends. We need the warmth of a cheerful and thankful heart to reside deep within us, and only Christ can fully deliver that unfaltering feeling! Focus on someone you're thankful for this season, and let them know that you are! Proverbs 12:25 tells us that a kind word cheers up the heart. We all need a little more cheer this year. 2020 has presented us unprecedented challenges, and a little bit of kindness and love can cure the sickness of the season.
I've noticed in my neighborhood that people have started putting up Christmas decorations much earlier than I've noticed in years past. My son and I were actually talking about this a few weeks ago. I asked him, "Have you noticed it seems like people are decorating for Christmas earlier this year than usual?" He agreed with my assessment, and then we started discussing why we thought that was. It was a very short conversation because we immediately agreed that people needed the holiday cheer in their lives this year, and usually the holidays deliver that to some extent. Understandably, the holidays can equally be as difficult for some as it is joyous. While some people it may bring great joy, others it can bring great sadness. If you are in the former category then spread your cheer to others. Let the light of Christ shine through you this season brighter than ever before. If you fall into the latter category, then please indulge me a moment to offer some encouragement.
Christ is touched by the feeling of our infirmities. He knows the mental weakness or weariness you're suffering through. But the Bible tells us to put our mind on heavenly affairs. Much easier said than done sometimes, right? I challenge you to find some time and focus on God. Pray about your circumstances and even if this life has caused you grief that is highlighted during the holidays, a thankful heart can bring much cheer. You may be reading this and thinking to yourself, "You don't know what I'm going through; how can I be thankful?" And that would be an accurate statement. But God knows. And God is looking for a people that can praise Him and give thanks to Him especially when times are rough. It's easy to pray, praise, and be thankful when everything is going our way. It's hard when all hell has broken out against us.
Yet, look to Job as encouragement. He lost everything he had in 1 day. And at the end of Job chapter 1 we see his mental state. Job fell to the ground and worshipped God in spite of his tragedies. At the end of the first chapter, Job said, "Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return. The Lord gives and the Lord takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord!" That must have been hard to do when the flesh was likely pulling against him, and I commend Job for that faith. Sometimes I feel like I have no faith especially in the middle of the battle. But remember, it only takes the faith the size of a mustard seed to tell the mountain to move! You can get through this season in Christ! If God be for you, who can be against you? Greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world! We know that all things work together for the good to them that love God, to them that are called according to His purposes! All promises listed in the word of God for our benefit!
Tis' the season for thanksgiving, friends! And even if this life has little to be thankful for, Christ died on the cross for our sins so we could spend eternity with Him. We have a lot to be thankful for through Christ. Hold your family tight this year. Kiss and hug your spouse. Kiss and hug your kids, parents, grandparents, extended family, and friends. Take no one for granted. God planted these folks in your life for a reason. Thank them. But above all, thank our Heavenly Father for giving us His Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. Stay strong in the faith, and have a great Thanksgiving!