NOTHING BRINGS US CLOSER TO GOD THAN ENGAGING THE HEART AND THANKING HIM
"We gather together, to ask the Lord's blessing."
Remember that old Thanksgiving song? The sincerity? The way it came from the heart of a good nation?
America was once a country that acknowledged God in everything: its major river, now known as the Mississippi, was the "River of the Immaculate Conception"; its first city, St. Augustine, was dedicated on the feast of the Virgin's Nativity; and its early bishops consecrated the nation to Mary's Immaculate Heart in its earliest days. In New York, Lake George was originally known as the "Lake of the Blessed Sacrament."
It's time to get back to that. It's time once more to acknowledge our great Creator. It's time to thank Him. As in our nation's early days, it's time to bring His Name back (with gratitude) to every public place.
When we do, when we give proper thanks, we feel His blessing. God likes our thankfulness. He likes to be acknowledged. He likes us to appreciate what He has given us -- which is everything.
Think about it a moment: your very existence -- the fact that you are conscious, that you ever had a thought, that you ever inhaled a breath -- is solely out of God's goodness. It's solely His direction. And the Lord wants us to know this so we will be holy and grow close to Him. Without purity we can't approach His throne, and the Lord is lonely when even one of His children is missing.
"Thank you, Jesus," we should say every day -- not just at Thanksgiving. "Thank you Christ." Repeat it. Keep saying it. It lifts our hearts. It transcends all else. Thank God and love God and you'll feel closer to Him than ever. "Oh give thanks to the LORD, call upon His name," says 1 Chronicles. "Save us, O God of our salvation, And gather us and deliver us from the nations, To give thanks to Your holy name."
"I will give thanks to the LORD with all my heart; I will tell of all Your wonders," says Psalms -- and may we highly recommend reading the entire Book of Psalms at crucial times in your life when first and foremost you should thank God. We have seen this cause wonders! "I will praise the name of God with song," it says in that wondrous book. "And magnify Him with thanksgiving."
"Always giving thanks," says Ephesians, "for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God, even the Father"!
Thank Him for everything: for your life, for your friends, for your children, for your spouse, for your parents, homes, food, for your work -- for your trials. Thank Him for allowing you the opportunity of heaven!
That's what heaven is: thanksgiving. We'll be spending an eternity at His throne praising and adoring and thanking. He is worthy of all worship and is the only one worthy of worship and in these times when so many forget Him -- when they forget how much He has restrained His anger, how long His mercy has endured -- we must thank him all the more intensely. We should do this hundreds of times a day: in the shower, while we're dressing -- while we're stuffing the turkey. We should do so full-heartedly!
"Praise You, Lord Christ. Thank You God. Thank You Lord. You are great beyond great! You created all. You gave us all. Thank You Lord. Thank You Christ. Thank You Holy Spirit!"
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