Summary: Seven blessings that will lead to thankful heart
From Good Sense to Turkey
Show the video “The First Thanksgiving”
Poor Larry! However, I found some interesting facts about turkeys this week.
Not only are do turkeys meet their fate by the axe, but they have been known to have heart attacks. When the Air Force was conducting test runs and breaking the sound barrier, fields of turkeys would drop dead. In addition, turkeys can drown if they look up when it is raining.
It would seem that turkeys have eyes in the back of their heads. Their range of vision is about 270 degrees. Add that to their keen sense of hearing, one can see they continue to elude some hunters.
A scared turkey can run at speeds up to 20 miles per hour. They can also burst into flight approaching speeds between 50-55 mph in a matter of seconds.
Benjamin Franklin wanted to designate the turkey as our National Bird instead of the eagle. Imagine going to war with the symbols of turkeys on our weapons. In addition, what would we eat for Thanksgiving?
Because, like poor Larry, 45 million turkeys will die for our pleasure. Do not misunderstand me. I do not want to kill them but I am thankful that someone will because I love turkey.
So today, we will discover seven blessings that will lead to a thankful heart to God.
1) Be thankful you are a slave. Romans 6:15-18:“Well then, since God’s grace has set us free from the law, does that mean we can go on sinning? Of course not! Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living. Thank God! Once you were slaves of sin, but now you wholeheartedly obey this teaching we have given you. Now you are free from your slavery to sin, and you have become slaves to righteous living.”
Slaves were a possession. It was illegal to take them. However, there was a provision made for slaves who sought freedom from a cruel master.
“If slaves should escape from their masters and take refuge with you, you must not hand them over to their masters.” (Deut 23:15)
This slave was not set free but rather became a slave to a new master.
We are a slave to what ever type of lifestyle we choose by how we obey the rules of that lifestyle. When our lifestyle reflects sinful living then we are a slave to that sinful living. When we were born, we were born into that sinful lifestyle. However, God created a way for us to escape from our cruel, sin-filled taskmaster and seek refuge with him by living a righteous lifestyle. In addition, He is bound by his own word that He will not hand us back over to our wicked taskmaster.
We are slaves to something. Therefore, this Thanksgiving let us be thankful that we are a slave to God.
2) Be thankful for your misery. Romans 7:21-25
“I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. I love God’s law with all my heart. But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. So you see how it is: In my mind I really want to obey God’s law, but because of my sinful nature I am a slave to sin.”
Now we must face a terrible truth. While we are no longer a slave to sin, we constantly choose to make ourselves slave repeatedly. There is a battle that wages between our mind and our flesh. We know what we should and should not be doing, yet we constantly give in to those fleshly desires. In addition, it makes us miserable. However, it is in this misery that we seek the only one who can free us. And that one is Jesus Christ our Lord. We cannot overcome sin on our own. We need the power of the Holy Spirit who lives in us. If we did not feel miserable about our mistakes, we would not seek him or repent.
3) Be thankful for the oppressing law.
1 Corinthians 15:56-57 For sin is the sting that results in death, and the law gives sin its power. But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ.
The law was given to the nation of Israel to show them how truly sinful they were. It exposed their sin. Paul wrote, “Well then, am I suggesting that the law of God is sinful? Of course not! In fact, it was the law that showed me my sin. I would never have known that coveting is wrong if the law had not said, “You must not covet.” However, sin used this command to arouse all kinds of covetous desires within me! If there were no law, sin would not have that power. At one time I lived without understanding the law. But when I learned the command not to covet, for instance, the power of sin came to life, and I died. So I discovered that the law’s commands, which were supposed to bring life, brought spiritual death instead. Sin took advantage of those commands and deceived me; it used the commands to kill me. But still, the law itself is holy, and its commands are holy and right and good.” (Romans 7:7-12)