Summary: Why should we give thanks to God? A great thanksgiving day sermon where I give 5 reasons why we should give thanks to God and how we develop it in our lives.
Title: Developing A Spirit Of Thanksgiving
Text: I Chron 16:8
- A question this morning that I want to ask is this, Why should we give thanks to God?
- What is the purpose of giving thanks to God?
- When we look at our world from what we are hearing in the news and what we are seeing, many people will have a hard time to be thankful
- To be thankful, means that we have to choose to be thankful. Being thankful is a choice that we make, and we should never look around us to gain strength.
- Keeping an attitude of thankfulness we keep you from being ungrateful.
- Ungratefulness leads to selfishness, and selfishness leads to freedom from God. Listen to this story:
Thankfulness seems to be a lost art today. Warren Wiersby illustrated this problem in his commentary on Colossians. He told about a ministerial student in Evanston, Illinois, who was part of a life-saving squad. In 1860, a ship went aground on the shore of Lake Michigan near Evanston, and Edward Spencer waded again and again into the frigid waters to rescue 17 passengers. In the process, his health was permanently damaged. Some years later at his funeral, it was noted that not one of the people he rescued ever thanked him.
- So the question is this morning, why should we give thanks to God? I want to show you 5 reasons we give thanks to God.
Point 1: Because Giving Thanks Is A Choice
Psalm 7:17 says, “I will give thanks to the Lord because of His righteousness and will sing praise to the name of the Lord Most High.”
Psalm 30:12 says, “that my heart may sing to you and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever.”
Psalm 35:18 says, “I will give you thanks in the great assembly, among throngs of people I will praise you.”
- Life can be looked at in two different ways:
i. Unthankful - always looking at the negetive
ii. Thankful - Looking at the positive, which is God.
- I like this story about the first thanksgiving in America which was founded upon being thankful in the midst of difficulty.
The first American Thanksgiving didn’t occur in 1621 when a group of Pilgrims shared a feast with a group of friendly Indians. The first recorded thanksgiving took place in Virginia more than 11 years earlier, and it wasn’t a feast. The winter of 1610 at Jamestown had reduced a group of 409 settlers to 60. The survivors prayed for help, without knowing when or how it might come. When help arrived, in the form of a ship filled with food and supplies from England, a prayer meeting was held to give thanks to God.
- The individuals could look at there situation in two different ways:
- They could have focused on the negative, people that were dead, the hardship, questioning why.
- But instead the people focused on what God had done, and gave Him thanks. Giving thanks is a choice we make in life, even in the midst of difficulty.
- David was thankful, but it did not come from being super spiritual, but rather choice.
- We give thanks to God because....
Point 2: Because God Is Near
Psalm 75:1 says, “We give thanks to you, O God, we give thanks, for your Name is near, men tell of your wonderful deeds.”
- Jesus is as close as the mention of His name the Bible tells us.
- We all no that we have a God that is with us in the good times and bad times.
(Give story of baseball series)
When I watched the series between the New York Yankees and Minnesota Twins I saw people, cheering for the players of there favorite team. Both young and old were cheering and screaming there heads off.
When I was watching the Lord dropped this observation in my mind, and the thought was, not everyone is happy who is there. But they are still cheering and praising the team they love. When the pitcher made a good pitch they would thank him for doing a good job.
- The point is people with problems in there life would praise and thank a team, who can’t hear them. All the players hear is noise and screams.
- But God hears our thanks, and if people with all there difficulty can praise other people for hitting a ball. Then we should be able to as well.
- The difference between God and baseball players is God is near and hears us, baseball players don’t hear our praise and don’t know us.
- This should give us excitement to thank God because He is near and loves us.