By: Ted Camp, Silent Word Ministries
Washington proclaimed the first nationwide Thanks-giving celebration in America
marking Nov. 26, 1789. “It was a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be
observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and simple favours of
an Almighty God.” –Wikipedia.
It seems that
in fullness America has forgotten God. Last year the annual day of prayer was
ignored. Thanksgiving means give thanks. It is impossible to grumble and be
grateful at the same time. Are you thankful?
First, how many
complaining Christians do you know? Some remind me of the Tottler’s Rules...
“If I like it, it’s mine. If I want it, it’s mine. If it’s in my hand, it’s
mine. If I can take it away from you, it’s mine. If I had it a little while
ago, it’s mine. If it’s mine, it must never appear to be yours. If we do it
together, it becomes mine. If it just looks like mine, it’s mine. If I saw it
first, it’s mine. If I think it’s mine, it’s mine. If I give it to you but
change my mind, it’s mine. Once it’s mine it will never belong to you. If it’s
broken, it’s yours!” (Unknown).
Next, how many
contented Christians do you really know?
The story is
told of a complaining farmer who grew tired of his mundane farm life. Finally,
he decided to sell his farm. He listed it with a real estate broker who
prepared an ad that emphasized all the farm’s advantages: ideal location,
modern equipment, healthy stock, acres of fertile ground, beautiful scenery,
privacy, restful, beautiful lake, and peaceful. When the farmer saw the ad he
cried out, “Hold everything! I’ve changed my mind. I’ve been looking for a
place like that all my life.”
It seems that
most people just do not consider how they have been greatly blessed. Most of
the world, especially at this time in the Philippines, would be very content to
have what we in America have. We need to learn that the best things in life are
not things. Money will buy... a bed, but not rest; books but not brains; food
but not an appetite; cosmetics but not beauty; house but not a home; medicine
but not health; luxuries but not culture; amusement but not happiness.
Count your many
blessings and name them one by one and it will surprise you what the Lord has
done. In your fullness don’t forget God (Deut.8:11-14). It is possible for
people and also a nation to forget God. I named “unthankful” and “unholy” the
ungodly twins (II Timothy 3:2). It seems that unthankfulness leads to unholiness.
As the farmer,
let’s look and learn to be more content with what we do have. “But godliness
with contentment is great gain...And having food and raiment let us be
therewith content.” (I Timothy 6:6-8). Complaining is natural, but contentment
is un-natural and must be learned. “For I have learned, in whatsoever state I
am, therewith to be content” (Philippians 4:11).
Thanksgiving season is a time we should all pause to think and thank God for
his many benefits. “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits”
(Psalms 103:2). Again, the best things in life are not things. Don’t love
things, but love people.
Thanksgiving let’s pause and in our fullness not forget the Lord and all His
many benefits. Thanksgiving is giving thanks! A time to pause, to think, and to
thank! Happy Thanksgiving y’all!
Ted Camp is director of Silent Word
Ministries, a worldwide ministry based in Trenton. E-mail him at