“This is the season of harvest and we are thankful for the bounty. It is not just “Turkey Day,” but actually we should be thankful everyday.” Pastor Allan was bringing his message and from my notes I present his edited sermon.
If you have not read the book, or seen the movie “The Hiding Place,” I would recommend that you do so. It is the story of Corrie Ten Boom and her sister Betsy, were arrested for helping the Jews and taken to a concentration camp. Betsy managed to smuggle in her small Bible and they read the scripture: 1 Thessalonians 5:18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
Now the area they were assigned to was full of fleas, and Betsy said, we should be thankful for the fleas. Corrie was not sure she could agree, to thank God for fleas, but they decided to be thankful regardless of their situation. Other women joined them in a Bible study and they realized the guards did not bother them because they did not want to come where there were fleas. The fleas turned out to be a good thing.
No matter what are your circumstances find something in it to be thankful for. What is it hard for you to be thankful for? Many times the “fleas” in our lives may prove to be a blessing.
Paul and Silas were in prison locked in the stocks, but they sang and praised the Lord. They were not happy they were in prison, but while in a bad place they were thankful. The end of the story was the jailor and his entire household were saved.
The disciples were persecuted, but it was used to an advantage when Paul went to the Gentiles with the Gospel.
2 Corinthians 4:7-9,17 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God, and not of us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.
Paul could be thankful regardless because he practiced learning to be content always.
We cannot give our children a watered down message, but they need to know truth and what to stand up for. We must teach them how to be watchful with confidence and to walk without condemnation.
We need to teach them that evolution is wrong and that God created our world in 6 days and rested on the 7th day.
Rejoice in the Lord, and continue to pray for our High Schools. Last Tuesday at our church, 24 teens had a pizza lunch and heard the Gospel. Our aim is to make a difference in our High School.
We take so much for granted. What are you thankful for?
Satan tries to take things away from us; our children, our property, but don’t allow him to steal your thankful heart. God will restore to you that which was stolen. Keep giving thanks in all things. Even when it looks like a tragedy - - know God can work it out for good, and bring you blessings that overflow.
As we approach the New year, there will be more changes, new ministries, and opportunities to reach out to others.
Be faithful and know that as God stretches us we are growing in faith and in confidence with a grateful heart.