I had a few minutes this morning (believe it or not) that I could sit down and relax. Turkey is in the oven, baby is asleep (finally), and I’m dressed and ready to go. Got a few sides to put together before we head out to a friends house but they won’t take long at all.
So I sat down to read for a minute and was looking at Matthew 6:25-34. I think this is a great passage to meditate on for Thanksgiving. I’ve always loved this idea of watching the sparrow and finding relief in the way they don’t have anxiety about what they will eat next. They just go about their business day to day, and count on the fact that they will find food. Jesus says we should learn from them.
Thankfulness can replace anxiety and fear in our hearts. If you are thankful, then you are trusting God. Being thankful requires faith because it means that you recognize that you’ve been given enough. Thankfulness does not need to replace our honest appeals to God for what we desire and need. Some people believe these are mutually exclusive. They think if you are asking for something it means you aren’t thankful. But why does that have to be true? You can be thankful and content in addition to being honest with God about what you’re lacking. And being thankful also doesn’t mean we don’t hurt when we lose something or someone special to us. We can be thankful for what and who we have and at the same time be sorrowing deeply because of a loss. It’s ok. We have to be honest with ourselves and will God. He knows it all anyway. In fact, he wants us to be honest with him. He wants us to ask for what we want and need. And we can trust in his goodness.
In the very next chapter Jesus says “Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!” He wants to be good to us, and give us what we desire. We can ask and be confident that if he delays or denies us our desire, it is because he knows what is best as a father does for his children.
The reason God provides what we need is because he is good. And he is pleased when we rely on his goodness day to day and assume he will sustain us. Today we focus on thanking him for being that way.