Summary: Thanksgiving Sermon

“A Prayer of Thanksgiving”

Sunday November 23rd, 2014

Thanksgiving…what does that word bring to mind? For many it is turkey and Mom’s dressing, cranberry sauce and all the fixins. We enjoyed a good Commucnity Thanksgiving Dinner this past Friday. We can all name things we are thankful for but why do we do the things we do?

• Traditions have history don’t they?

• Traditions are passed from one generation to the next

• Traditions are patterns that we follow to gain a certain experience.

• We keep traditions in place for the benefit of others to gain the experience

• Our experiences define our identity and define who we are

John 11:41-42

So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. 42 I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.”

• Excerpt of Lazurus being raised from the dead

• At the time is was the greatest of Jesus’ miracles ever seen

• But these two verses that Jesus says teach something critically important with regards to our own Thanks

A prayer of Thanksgiving entails………………….

1.) Assurance that God hears us

• Ever been to a mall and hear a little kid yell mom? All the mothers turn and look. No matter what age they are, moms turn their head!

• One thing that totally aggravates the fire out of me is when someone says that “we are ALL Children of God!”

• No where in the Bible does it say we are “all” God’s Children by being of being human decent.

John 1:11-13

He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.

Romans 8:15

The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.”

Galatians 3:26

So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith,

• You are only made a child of God through a profession of faith in and thru Jesus Christ.

• We are adopted into the family of God

• So if you have crossed the line of faith, received Christ and his salvation for your life you can be assured that God hears your prayers

• Jesus had assurance that God heard him He was the Son of God, we can have the same assurance that God hears us

A prayer of Thanksgiving entails………………….

2.) Evidence of a Relationship

John 11:42b

I knew that you always hear me,

• These two verses speak to the close relationship that Jesus has with the Father.

• But it also speaks to us that we ought to have the same

• Some say we could never achieve it on our own of which I would agree

• The only way that you and I can have an intimate relationship with God the same way that Jesus had is through the infilling of the Holy Spirit.

• The Holy Spirit is the catalyst between us and God

• Notice what Jesus says there

John 11:4c

but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here,

• See, Jesus knew God would raise Lazurus

• Jesus prayers out loud for the benefit of faith building!

• To often we approach God with a hesitant heart rather than a believing heart! We hamper our petitions before God because our belief system is limited, because we haven’t posied God to act on our behalf!

• Not that we don’t believe that God can move

• But God isn’t our first thought as a solution for our problems

• When God becomes the first thought, when we make Jesus the subject of our lives, then and only then will we see the benefits.

• Your relationship with God must be built through consistency and persistency. The more persistent and consistent you are with your prayer life, Bible study, and fellowship with Christians the more you will grow in your relationship with Christ.

A prayer of Thanksgiving entails………………….

3.) Trust in God’s Timing

John 11 42c

I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.”

• As our relationship with Christ grows the evidence of faith will nurture your witness for Christ

John 11:35

Jesus wept.

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