“2020.” For many, that single word “2020” has become the humorous joking (but not really joking) equivalent for “the year that can’t get any worse,” or “the year in which anything bad can and will happen.” Whether humorous internet memes or deeply lamenting hearts, 2020 has been a year with extra stress and exhaustion. It has been a year with significant riots and social protests, a year with a deeply divided election, and of course, a year where so much attention has surrounded the COVID-19 Coronavirus. No wonder many people are worn out!
But even amidst various public and private adversities, there is always a place for gratitude. Gratitude never goes out of style or becomes irrelevant because of who God is. Thankfulness is recognizing and honoring God’s goodness and faithfulness to provide for our spiritual and physical needs. It ascribes honor to God and promotes humility in us. This is one of the great contrasts between the believer and unbeliever. We affirm that we deserve nothing, but in giving us Himself in Christ, God has offered us everything! The believer who knows Christ can uniquely be content with gratitude in all circumstances, even in 2020, even if holiday plans have had to be changed, even if we are weary. Why? Because Christian gratitude transcends every circumstance and anchors itself rather in the person, beauty, and redemption of God.
- 1 Thes 5:18 in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus
- Phil 4:6-7 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
- Col 2:6-7 Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude.
Our situation is never so desperate that it’s not fitting to give thanks to God! It’s impossible to be ungrateful while meditating on the character of the God to whom we’ve been reconciled or while meditating on the gracious salvation he has bestowed on us.
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday, friends – choose gratitude! Remember and recount the goodness and faithfulness of our God!
Ps 100:4-5 Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him, bless His name. For the LORD is good; His lovingkindness is everlasting and His faithfulness to all generations.