Everyday is Thanksgiving Day
I was going to do the lesson this morning on separation from the world part 1 in the One Year Discipleship course but the Lord laid it on my heart to focus on a lesson that reflects our wonderful time of the year when we give thanks to the Lord. Another reason is I just didn’t feel like stepping on toes this morning. I just didn’t feel as if this was the Sunday to step on toes. However, since I am now on the subject of stepping on toes, I have a little story for you all to open things up. Brother Russell and I talk quite a bit on facebook and about a month or so ago we were talking via messaging on facebook and I said “Bro Russell, I think Pastor stepped on my toes during a sermon the other day.” I’m not sure but I think because I think he stepped on my toes that I must have needed it or I wouldn’t think he stepped on them?” Bro Russell’s epic response was “Don’t feel bad I have Jerry Summy tattooed on my toes.” Hey listen, we all need our toes stepped on don’t we? In fact I don’t feel like I have been to Church unless my toes get stepped on. That’s called conviction that should lead to repentance not to be repented of.
The message or lesson this morning is titled “Every day is Thanksgiving Day.” Yet at the same time as I say everyday is Thanksgiving day in the life of the believer I don’t want to minimize this special time of the year where it seems like all of our country is centering their attention on having a thankful spirit and we ought to. So this is a good time of year and even though every day is Thanksgiving day it’s great to have this particular time set aside even in the secular community for a time of Thanksgiving. But for us every day should be Thanksgiving day.
“Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah.” Psalm 68:19
When you come to Psalm 68 it has a rich history behind it. You have to understand that many of these Psalms really mirror truth that was happening in some of the events in Israel’s past. Let me just say that the Psalms in its entirety these 150 Psalms, if you referred to a hymn book this would be the Jewish Hymn book, and they would sing these songs. At certain times of celebration they would sing a particular song. This is a Psalm that actually takes the nation of Israel back to the time where the ark of God was restored to their presence. We all know the story where King David was attempting to bring the Ark back and God had specific instructions on how it was to be handled and I don’t know if one of the oxen trembled or what but Uzziah he reaches his hand forth and touches the Ark to steady it and God kills him. Now when we see that we think that seems like a reasonable thing to do but you have to understand God gave instructions and warnings that NO ONE was to touch the Ark and God kept His Word and Uzziah died and David got mad. That’s pretty severe isn’t it? But aren’t you just so thankful and grateful that God keeps His Word? We can count on God and hold Him to His Word. This Bible, the KJV Bible, which by the way is the preserved Word of God for the English language. I am so thankful for this Book. Thank the Lord for His Word today. Jeremiah said “Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by thy name, O Lord God of hosts.” Have some for breakfast or lunch and see how it changes the rest of your day. Listen to it, pray it; just stay connected to it. This simple “up look” will change your entire outlook. It did just that for the man known as the Weeping Prophet, and it will do the same for you!
Back to Psalm 68:19. I want to center our attention on verse 19 and this Thanksgiving time. First of all notice that we are to praise the Lord. Now I know we talk in Christian circles and we say “praise the Lord, Praise the Lord” and I struggle with this phrase because it’s gotten to be such a common thing to say in Church its almost like “I’ll pray for you brother or I’m praying for you sister or Amen and amen and we just amen anything and everything without giving much thought to what we are amening. When we say “praise the Lord,” are we really praising the Lord? And here it says in verse 19 “Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah.” Here we are to praise the Lord and we are to give honor to whom honor is due. Honor is due to our GREAT GOD. Even though we may praise the Lord during this time the center of our attention a lot of times is focused on things and stuff more than on Almighty God. If you notice here it says two names of God here are mentioned in this scripture. If you notice in verse 19 it says “Blessed be the Lord” and then “even the God of our salvation.” When it talks about God there the Lord its talking about the Almighty One. When it talks about Salvation means deliverer or “deliverance.”
It’s so important to think about this this time of year. Don’t lose sight of the fact of a good harvest. Lets think about the Lord this morning and His great Salvation. Because He has delivered us. What has He delivered us from? He has delivered us from Hell. Have you thought about that? You deserve Hell. If you were to go to Luke 16 where it talks about the rich man and Lazarus and it talks about where the rich man died and went to Hell and Lazarus died and went to Abraham’s bosom, then at the crucifixion we know that Jesus led captivity captive and gave gifts unto men and at the same time we find that there was a great gulf fixed there and this rich man who fared sumptuously every day lift up his eyes being in torments… that should be your state and that should be your end. We are not talking about annihilation, we are talking about eternal punishment in the fires of Hell where it says the “fire is not quenched”, that means it’s not minimized, and the worm dieth not. Think of every lust mankind can have and every desire and yet there is no satisfaction, it cannot be fulfilled, it is utter torment and pain and suffering and you deserve that and I deserve that. And when it says here in this Psalm verse 19 He is the God of our Salvation He is the God of our deliverance. He has delivered you from Hell, He has moved you from darkness into light, He has moved you from death to life, He has moved you from the torments of Hell to the blessedness of Heaven. That should be enough to have Thanksgiving time! That should be enough to say PRAISE THE LORD, PRAISE THE LORD!
How many here, the reason you got saved, the main motivating factor behind you getting saved was you did not want to go to hell? Would you raise your hand? Probably at least 90% of you. The reason you got saved is you didn’t want to go to hell. And yet in church after church nobody preaches on hell. No wonder people don’t fear the Lord. You got saved because you feared the Lord. In fact the fear of the Lord is nigh unto Salvation Psalm 85:9. It is the first thing that has to take place in order to get saved. So preachers preach all this mumbo jumbo kum ba yah and all that kind of stuff no wonder no one is getting born again where their lives are changed. They’re not afraid of God! When the Bible says in the book of Hebrews “it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. He also says in Hebrews our God is a consuming fire. Now that’s God. Now what’s your view of God this morning?
God is to be revered, respected, He is Lord of Lords and King of Kings and by Lord I mean capital LORD! I think we need to get back to the majesty of God. We spend a great deal of time in modern Christianity of bringing God down to us. As believers we are to always have a spirit of Thanksgiving. That’s why the Psalmist says “this is the day that the Lord has made and I will rejoice and be glad in it.” We have a choice every day whether we are going to live it in a spirit of thanksgiving or whether we are going to let the circumstances get to us. You here all the time “well I am doing good under the circumstances.” What are you doing under there? You’re not to be under the circumstances! He has given us victory through our Lord and savior Jesus Christ. We have every right and standing to live in a constant state of praise. Just give God praise and bless God for who He is. God’s grace is sufficient. We have a great God that saved us and delivered us out of so many troubles and there is so much to be Thankful for.
Not only does He deliver us from Hell but from all our troubles as well.
Just stop and think of all the trouble you have gotten in and how many times the Lord has delivered you. There is not a thing in this world, no hypothetical anything that you can think of where God cannot deliver you out of it. I have been in pickles you cannot imagine. Especially in the past few years and the Lord brought me out of all of it!! We all have our trials in this Christian life, you’ve got yours and I’ve got mine but we serve and great God, the great Jehovah I AM! There is a lot to be Thankful for. But there are so many in these what I believe to be the last of the last days that are ungrateful. They may pay lip service to it. Thats no surprise though because scripture prophesied in Timothy that that would be one of the main signs of the last days.
Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Psalm 103:2
We have to realize this wonderful truth… that EVERY SINGLE day He loads us up with benefits! What a truth! Don’t forget His benefits ever! How He treats us, He gives us His grace. Think about Paul in 2 Corinthians and the messenger of Satan buffeting him. That doesn’t mean Paul woke up with a headache it means he was beat on. Imagine how Paul felt. He asked the Lord thrice to remove it and then the Lord answered and said “My grace is sufficient for thee.” His grace is undeserved kindness. He doesn’t say he will remove the pain or suffering but he gives us the grace endure the pain. He gives us His grace and we don’t deserve it. He gives us His grace in big measure to every single one of us, all we need, its there for every single one of us! You say but I’m not as good as so and so… it doesn’t matter about your goodness it matters about His greatness! And His relationship with you and as one of His children He is going to give you His grace day by day and moment by moment, what a great God! Praise the Lord, Bless the Lord! That’s our God and we are just looking at one verse of scripture, the truth of it! How wonderful is that amen? So the Lord treats us with grace. Here is what I like, He treats us in mercy. Think about that, I am so glad that God doesn’t treat me in justice. Because I deserve Hell. Even after I’ve gotten saved I deserve so much punishment. I have blown it so many times. I don’t meet my own expectations much less the Lords and yet He is merciful.
I have got myself into more pickles that when I go to pray to the Lord I find myself asking the Lord for mercy and to not punish me as my sins deserve. You know we tend to pull some real shenanigans sometimes don’t we? I think, how can I even go and pray to God and ask for help? But I go to him and fall on my face spiritually and say God I need your mercy. I will take what you give me but will you please be merciful to me Lord please? Then I am reminded of Lamentations 3:22-23 “It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassion’s fail not. 23 They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.” Christian, you may have gotten yourself in trouble or jammed up like in between a rock and a hard place, why don’t you just go to the throne of grace and find grace to help in a time of need and beg Him for mercy! He is a merciful God. Every single day that you breath a breathe it’s because of His mercy.
My friend you and I need to realize something… He loads us every single day to our capacity. To what we need and can handle. Most importantly He gives us His grace and His mercy.
“Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Ephesians 5:20
John Phillips writes:
“All things? Are we to give thanks when things go wrong? When injustice comes? When death or sickness enters? When a loved one goes astray? Can we still sing when times are hard? Paul could. We only have to picture him and his dear friend Silas in the Philippian jail to see what it means to be filled with the Spirit. Their backs were torn, their limbs were cramped by the stocks, and their future was uncertain, yet they were singing! That prison cell was so shaken that its doors burst open; the other prisoners were so spellbound they could not budge. The jailer himself was so moved that his first words were, “What must I do to be saved?” (Acts 16:30)”
We have a lot to be so thankful for. Especially being at peace with God. Romans 5:1 I’ve said this before and I am going to say it again:
“The blessings of the Christian life are unlimited, but one of these is more valuable than all others combined, and that is fellowship with God in Christ. The saved man can walk and talk with God every moment of every day. The blood of Jesus Christ has forever removed the great chasm between his soul and God that once existed because of his sin. By faith in Christ’s blood, the believer enters into the very presence of the great and wonderful God.
“The Christian might be nothing in the eyes of society, but he can walk with the Lord of Glory. He might be condemned, even hated, by men, but he is the apple of God’s eye, and can bask in God’s affection. The Christian might not be able to gain the hearing of even one of this world’s nobility, but he can converse at will with the King of kings. The Christian might have to endure sickness, ridicule, poverty, and many other sore trials, but the man that walks with God learns there is in that communion a joy, a peace, a sweetness, a wisdom, and a strength that makes all trials lose their ultimate bitterness. The Christian might be lonely for human companionship; his friends might even forsake him; but he knows he has a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.
“What a treasure is fellowship with God! And this treasure is through Jesus Christ. The precious Lord Jesus, the Lord of glory, the Delight of men, the Prize of prizes, is the Christian’s portion. He belongs to the Christian, and the Christian belongs to Him. The Christian is a part of His very body, of his flesh, and of his bones (Eph. 5:30); this is how intimate is the relationship between God and the believer. “ (David Cloud Does Salvation Make a Difference)
Everyday is Thanksgiving day for you. It’s a good idea to write down answered prayers and what the Lord has done for you. It will help you to not forget all God’s benefits. Don’t get into a position where you forget and then don’t care. One of the signs of the last days is people will be ungrateful. In general we are an ungrateful people. There is so much to be grateful for. We are already seated in the Heavenlies! Do you care? Do you consider it? Go to the Lord in prayer and bless the Lord and thank Him. Not just to your friends or brothers and sisters in Christ but just you and the Lord. Just thank Him selah. Selah means to pause or to rest. What it means also is that you are to stop right there and think about what God has said and you are to exalt Him and thank the Lord. God is a wonderful God, He is our God and there is no other. Bless the Lord, praise the Lord and forget not all His benefits and stop right there and direct your praise and your Thanksgiving toward Him selah.