Summary: A thanksgiving message
13, October 2002
Dakota Community Church
Adding It Up
The young man was feeling very proud of himself. As a brand-new college graduate he had taken the C.P.A. Exams & passed with flying colors. Now he was a full-fledged Certified Public Accountant.
His father had been an immigrant to the U.S., & now owned his own little business. Filled with self-importance, the young man began to criticize his father’s way of keeping books. He said, “Dad, you don’t even know how much profit you’ve made. Over here in this drawer is your accounts receivable. Over there are your receipts, & you keep all your money in the cash register. You don’t have any idea how much you’ve made.”
The father answered, “Son, when I came to this country the only thing I owned was a pair of pants. Now, your brother is a doctor, your sister is an art teacher, & you are a C.P.A. Your mother & I own our home. We have a car, & we own this little business. Now add that up, subtract the pants, & all the rest is profit.”
We don’t naturally give thanks.
- My boys did not have to be taught to say “No”.
- My boys did not have to be taught to say “Mine”.
- My boys did not have to be taught to scream if they weren’t happy
“Thank-you” still takes coaching.
Gene Perrett suggests that we have more things to be thankful about than we realize. For example:
"Be grateful for automatic dishwashers. They make it possible for mother to get out of the kitchen before the kids come back for between-meal snacks.
"Be grateful for husbands who attack small repair jobs around the house. They usually make them big enough to call in professionals who’ll do it right.
"Be grateful for children who put away their things & clean up after themselves. They’re such a joy to have around that you hate to see them go home to their own parents.
"Be grateful for teenagers. They give parents an opportunity to learn a second language.
"And at Thanksgiving, be grateful for smoke alarms. They let you know when the turkey’s done."
We have so much to be thankful for! With that in mind let’s read:
22Then Jesus said to his disciples: "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. 23Life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. 24Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap; they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!
Luke 12: 29-31
29And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. 30For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.
1. You need bread to live.
Matthew 6: 7-8
7And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. 8Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.
- Before you ask.(Do ask)
- Don’t babble. (He doesn’t a resume.)
- What is your heart set on?
Missionary statesman Hudson Taylor had complete trust in God’s faithfulness. In his journal he wrote: Our heavenly Father is a very experienced One. He knows very well that His children wake up with a good appetite every morning... He sustained 3 million Israelites in the wilderness for 40 years. We do not expect He will send 3 million missionaries to China; but if He did, He would have ample means to sustain them all... Depend on it; God’s work done in God’s way will never lack God’s supply.
He knows your earthly needs! Don’t worry; give thanks.
2. God provides the bread you need to live.
Everywhere Jesus went he met the natural need and the spiritual need.
To the blind he gave sight.
Mark 10: 50-52
50Throwing his cloak aside, he jumped to his feet and came to Jesus. 51"What do you want me to do for you?" Jesus asked him. The blind man said, "Rabbi, I want to see." 52"Go," said Jesus, "your faith has healed you." Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road.
To the lame he gave wholeness.
Matthew 12: 13-14
13Then he said to the man "Stretch out your hand." So he stretched it out and it was completely restored, just as sound as the other. 14But the Pharisees went out and plotted how they might kill Jesus.
To the hungry he gave food.