In the United States, we are rapidly approaching a
national holiday known as “Thanksgiving Day.” On this day, people in the United States are told that they should focus on being thankful for everything
they have, including a free nation, the freedom to worship God as they wish, for families and pretty much every good thing that they enjoy.
However, the scriptures do not seem to limit for
what we should be thankful. Indeed, even the time does not seem to be limited. We are told that we should be “always giving thanks for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submiing yourselves to one another in the fear of God.” (Eph 5:20-21).
Have we ever considered the meaning of that small
word “always” in that sentence? How about the word “all?” Even elementary students whose first language is English know that “always” does not mean “sometimes,” “when we think of it,” “when it is convenient,” or anything other than “at all times.”
The word “all” brings with it the same difficulties.
“All” does not mean, “some,” “most,” “many” or anything other than for “every one and thing.”
Within the Church of God is contained many different individual beliefs with virtually identical core beliefs. By that I mean that nearly all of the Churches of God believe that we should all keep the Commandments of God, including keeping His Sabbath Day, and that we should accept the sin-cleansing sacrifice of the Christ.
Yet, our Adversary continues to get us to focus on
our differences, the minor things we understand and believe differently. Is that something for which we should be thankful? Is our focusing on our differences to create walls between us something that comes from God? Isn’t it Satan who gets us to claim that our brethren “don’t worship the same God?”
The idea of being thankful and giving thanks is mentioned nearly 40 times in the New Testament alone.
Isn’t it possible that the idea of being thankful is important to God? If so, consider the many brethren who believe the
same as we do on the “salvational” issues. Are we
thankful for their steadfastness to the faith once delivered as they understand it? Are we thankful for the differences between us? Shouldn’t we be? After all, don’t those difference give us things to review and prove long after we have passed that blush of discovery we each had
when we first saw that God had called us to a truth
that the world can’t or refuses to grasp?
Can we thank God that He will in His own time reveal to us all truth? Can we fellowship in thankfulness to God for reserving to Himself this great fellowship which He has blessed with His understanding?
Can’t we thank and bless God at all times for all this
great assembly who we can call our brothers and sisters?
I think we can. I think we should. I think Daddy
would find that pleasing. Let’s do that!