There’s much to be thankful for

Byron McGee - Contributing columnist

This is the best time of the year. We celebrate Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s in the space of a month and a half.

What is special about Thanksgiving is the memories I have from growing up in a home with great cooks. The smell of turkey, ham, and all the fixings filling our home created a sense of anticipation of sitting down to a delicious meal and enjoying family and friends.

Prior to eating we stand in a circle holding hands and give thanks for another year of our family being together through good times and some difficult moments. We thank the Lord for blessing us another year.

We have much to be thankful for.

This year our traditions are being turned upside down. This virus Covid-19 is asking us to change what we have always done, gathering with family, friends, and making our way back home to celebrate the holiday season.

Instead, the medical people are asking that we limit travel and only have small gatherings. What we are seeing is for some we will do what we have always done regardless of the warnings and consequences. The ability to do what you want to do and live your life as you see fit is a good reason to give thanks.

I’m thankful that we live in a country that affords us these freedoms. For the Christian, Romans 8:28 speaks to us.

We know that “all things work together for the good of those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.”

No matter what happens in life, having knowledge that everything that happens is for our good gives us hope to take the circumstances of life in stride. Being his child and He is my God, my trust in him is unwavering.

Can we be thankful for everything that is going on? The answer is “yes.”

Even when we think it might be “no,” the answer is still “yes.” If you woke up this morning to have food, shelter, clothing, family, friends, and many more of life’s blessings, you and I have much to be thankful for.

Thank God!

1 Chronicles 16:8 “Give thanks to the Lord; call on his name; proclaim his deeds among the people.” We are commanded to give thanks, and who else is there to call on but the Lord?

Psalm 136:2 “Give thanks to the God of heaven! His faithful love endures forever. Give thanks because he is faithful and his love lasts forever.” That is why we thank him.

Isaiah 38:19a “The living, only the living can thank you as I do today.” We who are alive need to give thanks each day.

Thanking God for food

The reason we should bless our food before we eat is that Jesus is our example. The feeding of 5,000 in the account of five loaves and two fishes tells us that Jesus raised his hands and thanked God for supplying their need.

Matthew 14:19; Mark 6:41; Luke 9:16; and John 6:11.

1 Timothy 4:4,” For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving.” We have much to be thankful for. This verse tells us thankfulness in everything.

Thanking God for people

1 Timothy 2:1, “ First of all, then, I urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for everyone…”

Eph 1:16 “ I never stop giving thanks for you as I remember you in my prayers”

I would like to wish all a happy and blessed Thanksgiving and a Merry Christmas and also a Blessed New Year. Let’s make being thankful a part of our lives every day, not just once a year.

O give thanks

O give thanks

Unto the Lord

For he is good

For he is good

And his mercy endureth forever

Byron McGee is Pastor of Cornerstone Baptist Church in Wilmington.

This weekly column is provided to the News Journal by members of the Wilmington Area Ministerial Association.

Byron McGee

Contributing columnist