When God is thankful for us
Tell me you weren’t expecting a traditional “We should give thanks to God this Thanksgiving” blog. You should know me better by now. In the sermon series I brought to my church this month, I invited the congregation to consider how (and when) God gives thanks for us.
Think about that. It is kind of mind-blowing. God gives thanks for us? It should be the other way around, right? We give our thanks to God.
We should give our thanks to God, yes. This is true. Absolutely. But as we move from Thanksgiving Day, I invite you to think about God giving thanks for us. With this, let your thoughts bring in a question or two. How would God give thanks for us? When could God give thanks for us?
Yep. That time you were a saint. Literally. That time you even surprised yourself with how charitable you were with time, money, or both. And I’m not talking BIG time charity like being a missionary in Guatemala for three months, or earlier this year when you singlehandedly bought a financially-pressed family a 2018 Ford Festiva. I’m talking about the time you knew you were led by God to reach far beyond yourself and your own agenda in the moment and did…you guessed it…God’s work.
Oh, yes. God was so thankful for you. God beamed like one of those parents whose kid does something…well, yeah… TOTALLY awesome.
Consider scripture. In the first two weeks of November, we engaged the book of Ruth. In the first week, we looked at Naomi’s actions. Even though this widow and survivor of her two sons’ deaths felt that the Almighty had made life bitter for her (Ruth 1:20), she still pressed on. God HAD to have been thankful for her tenacity, grit, and ability to literally put one foot in front of the other. She moved through pain and loss.
In the second week, we considered how Naomi, Ruth and Boaz followed God even though it must have seemed odd to Ruth, a foreigner, to abide in unfamiliar native customs. The result of her implied willingness to honor God was the birth of Obed who was a direct descendant of Jesus from the Davidic line (Ruth 4:13-17). God must have had a thankful moment when that baby arrived.
I pray you realize—or will soon realize—that the almighty is thankful for you, not just for the TOTALLY awesome things you do now and again, but also, and as importantly, when you do the little things.
Here are three general examples. Even when you’re having a pretty crummy moment, you still try. When you feel empty, you keep going. Or, on a heartbreaking anniversary day (and a watershed moment has just happened or may soon happen), you still meet someone in the eye and nod or say hello. Even then, God is thankful for you.
Sure, the Almighty creates new stars and provides miracles around His world every day. He is self-sufficient. And that all-powerful line on His resume is really accurate.
But God also needs you. He appreciates you.
So yes, on this thanksgiving, I want you to know something. God gives thanks for you.
Now, with that, go and make a difference.