by Pastor Mark Jordan
“” (1 Thessalonians 5:18, CEB)
What were you doing one week ago today? Do you remember? Did you have to pause and think about it? One week ago today was Thanksgiving. We were at Tiffany’s parents’ home, celebrating gratitude with a grand gathering of family. It was awesome.
Thanksgiving is a special day, but it isn’t intended to be just one out of 365.25. A posture of thanksgiving should define our entire lives, even when things seem tough. As today’s Bible verse tells us, we should keep thanking God because of Jesus Christ, because this is precisely what He wants us to do.
As we approach the Advent season, which begins on Sunday, I think it’s important to remind you that we also know Jesus as Immanuel, meaning God with us. Jesus didn’t just come to walk the earth for 33 years some two-thousand years ago, but to be God with us forever. As Jesus was ascending to heaven after His crucifixion and resurrection, He told the disciples to remember that He is with them — and us, too! — until the end of the age (Matthew 28:20). For this reason, you can keep thanking God, even when things are tough. Why? Because no matter what you face, you don’t face it alone. God is with you. God is for you. And if God is, what can ever be against you (Romans 8:31)?
Prayer: Dear Lord, I choose to live in a perpetual state of thanksgiving. Forgive me when I allow the chaos of the world to be a distraction. I know you came all those years ago to be Immanuel, and you are with me still. I praise you, and I thank you. In Jesus’ holy name, Immanuel. Amen.