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At the end of this month we will be celebrating another Thanksgiving Day in our nation.   As we approach Thanksgiving there are some important questions for each one of us to consider.

First of all, for what do we give thanks? When such a question is posed I suspect that often times our minds go to stuff. We are thankful for another year of being able to have food and clothing and shelter. We thankful for another year of blessings even beyond these things. Perhaps you are thankful for good health, for being able to see a loved one, for a new birth in the family, or for a promotion at work. These are all good things for which we can give thanks. But God speaking though the Psalmist in Psalm 9:1 sets our sights a little higher. "I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart; I will recount all of your wonderful deeds." Here the psalmist gives thanks to God for all of His wonderful deeds. Think for a moment what those wonderful deeds may be in your life. Certainly we can give thanks to God for His creation. He created this world and grants to us all those blessings our minds have already been thinking about. Not only do we give thanks for God's creation, we thank Him that He sustains His creation through His powerful word. It is because of God that the sun rose this morning and we have another day to give thanks to the Lord. Beyond that we certainly give thanks to God for the salvation He brings into our lives. Jesus has gone to the cross for us. He suffered for our sin, rose from the dead and brings to all who believe in Him the gift of eternal life. As we consider the eternal torment in hell that Jesus has rescued us from and how on account of Him we will be able to spend eternity in heaven we will certainly want to give Him thanks for all these wonderful deeds and many more.

Secondly, as Thanksgiving draws near we need to consider how we give thanks? Often times when a child receive a gift the parents will make the child write a thank you note. Even though he or she may not feel like going through the effort to write a card, it is important to do. When we ponder all the wonderful deeds of the Lord certainly we will want to do more than just give a halfhearted thank you prayer to God. Like the Psalmist we will want to "give thanks to the Lord with (our) whole heart." The wonderful deeds of the Lord mean everything to us. Every good thing in life is a gift from God (James 1:17). Creation, salvation, and the ongoing blessings God showers upon us are all wonderful reasons to give thanks to God with all our heart.

Thirdly, as Thanksgiving draws near it is also important for us to consider who we are giving thanks to? Sometimes it seems as if many people in our country give thanks to a turkey, or a good cook, or to a football team, or to themselves. Now it is good to be thankful for all the blessings we are given. But as we do so it is important that as Christians we keep our focus on the real source of our many blessings. It is important that we echo the words of the Psalmist from Psalm 9:1: "I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart; I will recount all your wonderful deeds." Who are you thanking this year? Like the psalmist may it be the Lord. Thanks the Lord your creator. Thank the Lord who sustains life and has given to you all the blessings you have in this world. Thanks the Lord for all of His wonderful deeds, especially the mighty deeds of working salvation in your life. Give thanks to the one and only Lord God, The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit. Gather this Thanksgiving with other Christians and give thanks to the Lord God in our worship service on Tuesday, November 26. Gather with family and give thanks to God as you sit around the dinner table. Give thanks regularly in your heart and with all your heart for all the wonderful deeds of the Lord. Happy Thanksgiving.

Pastor Schoenfeld