I stumbled upon this image online this week:
It was a reminder that EVERY good thing we enjoy in this world is a gift from our Heavenly Father. As James writes in his short letter: ” Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights” (James 1:16-17)
Yes, our gifts are different and our struggles are real, but ultimately anything good is from God above.
Our hearts don’t naturally want to offer thanks to our Father. We love to take credit for the good things we enjoy in this world, but by doing this we rob God of the honour He is due.
As we acknowledge our dependence upon the Lord, we take one step forward in living a life of integrity. We protect ourselves from being deceived by the lie that we are in control, that we can take credit for our accomplishments and that we are not needy people.
A heart of gratitude is a natural segue into the coming advent season. For without an admission of our need for a saviour, the Christmas story descends into a sentimental mythical tale. Manger stories, Christmas gifts and Father Christmas merge together into an enjoyable but ultimately meaningless holiday. As we enter into this month, pray with me that we would have thankful hearts, giving glory to our heavenly Father for every good gift, especially, the gift of his Son, Jesus.
Finally, this image reminds me to pray for New City Church to become a place where people from every language, ethnic group and racial background can come together to give thanks to the Prince of Peace.