Summary: Tkanksgiving message 2001
Great Goals & Grateful Gifts
November 18, 2001
Eric A. Snyder, Minister
Farwell Church of Christ
I am thankful for
The mess to clean after a party because it means I have been surrounded by friends.
The taxes I pay because it means that I’m employed.
The clothes that fit a little too snug because it means I have enough to eat.
My shadow who watches me work, because it means I am out in the sunshine.
A lawn that needs mowing, windows that need cleaning and gutters that need fixing because it means I have a home.
All the complaining I hear about our government because it means we have freedom of speech.
The space I find at the far end of the parking lot because it means I am capable of walking.
My huge heating bill, because it means I am warm.
The lady behind me in church who sings off key because it means that I can hear.
The piles of laundry and ironing because it means I have clothes to wear.
Weariness and aching muscles at the end of the day because it means I have been productive.
The alarm that goes off in the early morning hours because it means that I’m alive.
Asked to write a composition entitled, "What I’m thankful for on Thanksgiving,"
little Timothy wrote, "I am thankful that I’m not a turkey."
Thanksgiving is a choice we have to choose to be thankful and find the blessings in our lives. They should be abundantly clear but if you are wondering what to be thankful for there are a couple that we can all agree on.
1. What are you thankful for?
1 Corinthians 9:15 Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!
The Bible tells us that at one time we were without God. Do you remember what that was like. You were wondering what life was all about. You searched for answers in every place imaginable. No matter what you did you found yourself wanting something else. You couldn’t put your finger on what left this void in your life and so you tried everything possible. Through all this life had to offer, you found yourself empty at the end of the day. You were hungry for meaning, you drank at the well of achievement searching for acceptance, yearning to feel wanted, desperate to be needed, longing for a love that lasts.
The Bible says that God loves us. You may have some trouble believing that. Perhaps when your child died, or your parent passed, or the doctor diagnosed you, or your spouse left, you decided that God didn’t care.
So you wrote him off. If he does exist then you have insisted on living the rest of your life as his enemy.
The truth is you think that’s where the story ends. But when you think that God just watches and doesn’t care. Friends: we serve an emotional God. Jesus wept when he came to Lazarus’ tomb. And the God who created you weeps when your life goes bad, He weeps when you reject Him. He is sorrowed when you blame Him and get angry.
They asked Zack Thomas if he talks to Peyton Manning when they are playing football. Zack Thomas said “no… because I don’t want to learn that he is a nice guy”.
Some of you won’t talk to God because you don’t want to learn that He is loving.
If this God is so loving then, why does bad stuff happen?
Because people have the freedom to choose.
He is a gentleman, he will not force you to make the right decision.
You say I didn’t chose to have my loved one die
I didn’t choose to get sick.
Well you didn’t but when God created humans He created them to live forever. When Adam and Eve chose to disobey God’s one rule they began to die. We introduced sin into this world. So when they ate they introduced sin, death, suffering, hardship, and separation from God into the word.
You say and we should be thankful, Yes Thank God for the choice that you have to be near his love.
The Bible says that God wanted to have a relationship with you so much that He had to make a choice. It was a choice that hurt Him deeply. You see because mankind chose to sin we inadvertently chose to be separated from His love but we also chose to be separated from His holiness, and righteousness.
So His choice was to offer his son as a sacrifice to take our disobedience away. His name was Jesus and He lived a perfect live and took the punishment that belonged to all humanity.
So God knows what it’s like to lose a family member, He knows what it’s like to be treated unfairly, He knows what it’s like to have those He loves leave Him, and he knows what it is like to be handed a death sentence.