Summary: We need times of Thanksgiving to give balance to all the times we face criticism and complaints.

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Thankful Living

2 Corinthians 9:11-15

Aren’t you glad we have annual Thanksgiving celebrations? For one thing you can get all the great food you would ever want. You can also watch all the football you would ever want to see. It is also a time to get together with your family and relatives and enjoy the fellowship with each another.

We need times of Thanksgiving to give balance to all the times we face criticism and complaints.

Rev. John Haiggai in his book, “How to Win Over Worry,” describes how people are who need to experience thankful living. Without experiencing a life of thanksgiving and praise people walk around with a face long enough to eat ice cream out of a pipe. The thankless person shuffles into church dragging his lower lip behind him. He slides into a pew chair and flips his lower lip over the back of the chair in front of him. He looks as happy as the skeleton and cross-bones on a bottle of poison.

The Apostle Paul says, “Tell God your needs and don’t forget to thank Him for His answers.” (Philippians 4:6b - Living Bible)

People who fail to live a thankful life continually look on the negative side of life.

I read about a pastor who knew a lady 29 years of age who maintained an expression on her face that looked like the advance agent of a coming tornado. She enjoyed her poor health. Her house looked like a tornado at him and her general appearance looked like an accident going somewhere to happen. She would come out of the front door of the church following the church service and shake the pastor’s hand. Her hand would be so limp the Pastor would feel like handing it back to her. The Pastor would greet her, “How are you?” She would tell him and give him a physical organ recital as she spewed out her tales of woe. The Pastor said he learned not to ask that question. In stead he determined to help her.

When he shook her hand, he really shook it. He gave her his finest smile and said, “Wow, you look so much better today. You must be feeling better.” Actually within a few months she actually did look better.

From Scripture we learn the importance of living a thankful, generous life?

I. Thankful Living results in Giving Praise and Thanks to God.

Scripture teaches that when you give generously to help others your giving results in people giving thanks to God. 2 Corinthians 9:11 “Yes, you will be enriched so that you can give even more generously. And when we take your gifts to those who need them, they will break out in thanksgiving to God.”

Because of a great famine in Jerusalem, Paul was taking an offering for the needs of the Christians in the city. Paul stated that when he took their generous offering to Jerusalem the Christians there would break out in thankfulness to God for supplying their needs. The generous giving by Christians in Corinth would be an answer to prayer of the church in Jerusalem.

Have you noticed how your giving to help meet the needs of someone else not only gave them a blessing but it also resulted in your being blessed. In the book of Acts the Apostle Paul quoted Jesus as saying, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” (Acts 20:35)

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