Why Give Thanks?
When my younger son was little, he had a burden to swim like his big brother. But once in the pool, he would cling to the railing. I told him to work at it and I would be there to take care of him. But he would not release that death grip.
We tend to do that with the burdens in our lives. We may share them others and receive some love, sympathy, or advice in return. Often we hear, All you have to do is…give it all to God…believe…have some faith…pray…trust Him…read the Bible.
Not always that easy. We want to put our burdens in God’s hands and walk away with His perfect peace. We try. Again and again. We pray for His will, purpose and direction, yet still feel the crushing weight of those burdens. Why hasn’t God come through for us?
We have no excuse to not thank God.
But God is not the problem. We are. We may think we’ve given our burdens to God, but they remain with us. And whatever accompanies our burdens—fear, worry, pressure, envy, distrust, anger—continues to haunt us.
Belief, faith, and trust are part of a process that moves us from focusing on ourselves to concentrating on God. Yet one part of this process is critically important. Without it, we will never let go of any burden.
God’s power and nature are clear from what He has made. Men and women have no excuse. Though they know God, they do not glorify Him as God nor give Him thanks. Their thinking has become futile and their hearts darkened. 1
Thanksgiving is always in season.
They did not thank God. John put giving thanks on the same level as glorifying God. Paul said our service leads others to thank Him…an attribute of following Christ…and he urged us to joyfully give thanks for everything. 2 But why is that so important?
Without thanking God—belief is conditional, faith is weak, and trust is impossible. What we want for ourselves becomes more important than what He wants for us. So we cling to our burdens and hope they will somehow just fade away.
It is always time for Thanksgiving. Do you have burdens? Believe God exists. Have faith He loves you. Trust Him to take your burdens. And thank Him. Then let go and have peace.
Chuck Graham is Founder and Executive Director of Ciloa, an international ministry devoted to encouraging others and teaching them how to encourage one another. He is also an author and speaker. Chuck and his wife, Beverly, live in Lawrenceville, Georgia, USA. Learn more about Chuck and Ciloa at www.Ciloa.org.
Footnotes: (1) Read Romans 1:20-21. This is my translation to apply Paul’s writing to us currently. (2) Read 2 Corinthians 9:12; Ephesians 5:15-20; Colossians 1:11-12, 3:15; 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18.
Pictures: Banner: Giving Thanks, from “Worship Him” by Esther Campbell, 3-13-2019, Rise757.church, Chesapeake, VA. (1) Come To Me, Matthew 11:28, Daily Verse from The Joy FM Alabama, 4-17-2019. (2) Burdened by ocusfocus, canstockphoto.com. (3) In Every Thing Give Thanks, creator unknown.