It is funny how when we get to a season about love or thankfulness is when we truly realize that the trait we are holding on a pedestal actually needs to be something we practice everyday, but because we keep ourselves so busy it flees from our minds. November in the States means a time of remembering what we are thankful for. We started this because of the first Thanksgiving feast where we sat and ate with the natives of America instead of slaughtering them–which we did even after this feast. Our minds are so fickle that way aren’t they?
Think about it. One minute we are so grateful for the food our parents feed us and then after or even during the meal we complain because we don’t want to eat the disgusting peas on our plate. In that complaining moment we forget to just be thankful we have healthy food in front of us.
Look at the Old Testament, specifically the Israelites, who were rescued out of Egypt, but the WHOLE way through the desert they complained! The whole way the didn’t trust that God would provide. Hello! God got you out of slavery by PARTING THE WATERS! I think God can make sure you have a meal to eat when you need it. (For the full story read Exodus 16 and on). In Psalm 100:4 we are called to be thankful!
Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.Psalm 100:4 NIV
The verse doesn’t say only enter his gates with thanks during Thanksgiving or Christmas or whatever holiday that has to do with being thankful. The Psalmist calls us to enter his gates with thanksgiving every time. Which means anytime you interact with your Heavenly Father we need to express our thanks and praise him for what he has given us.
There is an method of prayer that I learned during my college years, that I will admit I need to practice more when I go to my Father in prayer. I want to share it with you and challenge you to follow this, in your own way, everytime you prayer. It is called the ACTS method of prayer.
- Adoration: Give God praise and honor for who he is as Lord over all.
- Confession: Honestly deal with the sin in your prayer life.
- Thanksgiving: Verbalize what you’re grateful for in your life and in the world around you.
- Supplication: Pray for the needs of others and yourself
I think if I did a poll, most of us would say we start at supplication of our needs, but the problem with that is it is selfish. That is our sinful nature coming out. We are called to be selfless and the only way that can happen is if we keep God first in our life. This prayer outline helps keep that in check. This method of prayer can be something you deal on for hours or you can do this method in minutes. So in this season and in ALL seasons of life, let us continue to be thankful for everything God has provided us with! And when we selfishly mess up, confess it and refocus on God, because one of the things I am most thankful for is that He loves and forgives (when I truly ask and mean it) no matter how selfish and thoughtless I can be.
I am so thankful for you all and I pray you have a fruitful holiday this week! Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!