Summary: God's place is a joyful place of thanksgiving and praise... when we prepare to make it so.
Title: Let’s Meet at God’s Place for Thanksgiving
Text: Psalm 100
Thesis: God’s place is a joyful place of thanksgiving and praise… when we prepare to make it so.
In that we do not have family nearby Bonnie and I are pretty intentional about where we will go for Thanksgiving Dinner.
This year the Stanley Hotel reduced its brunch to serving only 300 guests so it booked up very quickly. I found an interesting and quaint place called The Hearth Stone in Breckenridge. It’s a 120 year old Victorian house that has been serving Breckenridge since 1939 but it did not begin serving until mid-afternoon. So it is brunch at Ellynton’s at The Brown Palace this year. No muss. No fuss. Nearby. Valet Parking. Jazz combo (not sure how that works on Thanksgiving). And we will enjoy a deliciously prepared and presented brunch.
We know where we are going. We know how to get there. We know we will be graciously received and served. We know we will enjoy our brunch. We are looking forward to Thanksgiving. We are going to The Brown Palace.
In one sense the celebration of Thanksgiving is not only an event… it is a destination.
I. God’s Place, Psalm 100:4
Enter his gates with thanksgiving; go into his courts with praise. Give thanks to him and praise his name. Psalm 100:4
The Psalmist associated the event of giving thanks with going to the House of God for the specific purpose of giving thanksgiving and praise to God. For the Psalmist and those who lived then and there giving thanks and praise meant going to Temple.
When our children were young we enjoyed going to Grandpa’s and Grandma’s house for holidays. It was usually a trip so the kiddos were especially excited when we finally arrived. The festivities were about to begin…. Hugs and kisses all around. Grandparents. Great Grandparents. Uncles and aunts. Cousins. Inlaws and outlaws. This all happened in the front yard and on the front porch before we unloaded our stuff and went into the house. It was always such a joyful time for us.
But then the years passed and our kiddos and our grandchildren would journey to be with Grandpa and Grandma. We typically get a text or a call… “We’re in Omaha.” Eventually we get a text or call, “We’re in Ogallala. And then the countdown begins… and as they anxiously pressed their noses against the car window when they arrived at our house… inside Bonnie and I had our noses pressed against the glass in anticipation of their arrival.
I am telling you the anticipation and joy we have experienced as grandparents awaiting the arrival of our children and grandchildren far exceeds their anticipation of arrival. Had I been more observant I would have seen how much our arrival meant to Grandpa and Grandma.
There is something heartfelt about going to God’s house… about deliberately setting a time to be in the presence of our Heavenly Father… and now I understand just how happy God must be when we arrive.