Have you noticed how Jesus likes to give thanks before meals? He did so before feeding the 5,000 and then the 4,000, but He didn’t ask for the bread and fish to multiply. He just gave thanks… and then of course food multiplied to feed a crowd! (see Matthew 14:13-21)
- Often when we pray for big-item needs, God gives the answer in seed form. God always starts with the small, and lovingly watches us as we make it grow, to prepare us to handle the big-items we ask for. Our attitude of thankfulness for the small things creates faithfulness and maturity for the small to become great.
- A thankful heart reflects a trustful heart. Even after giving thanks, Jesus still didn’t ask for more, because He knew what His Father had given was more than enough. The Father knows what we need before we even ask, and so thank Him ahead, knowing His answers are on their way. When we know who God is, we don’t need to place an order; we just need to be thankful.
- God is extravagant but He isn’t wasteful. Jesus made sure that the left-overs were gathered after everyone ate. God’s provisions are always more than enough. When He said He provides for all our needs, He meant continuously un-ending showers of blessings, more than we can ever ask for or imagine! And so a heart that is thankful for each and every gift and provision from the Father does not carelessly throw away the left-overs. Even Jesus gathered the crumbs and treasured every gift His Father gave.
This holiday, open your heart and be thankful to God:
for the seeds and the small beginnings;
for answers already on their way;
for the ‘more than enough’ and extras you are able to share;
for the promises that, yes, are yours.
An Extra thought:
Did you know Jesus also gave thanks before He raised Lazarus from the dead (John 11:41), and on the night he was betrayed (Luke 22:17-19)?
How about also giving thanks for the miracles about to happen, and the trials and testing that make you perfect in Christ? God is the expert at making things new and resurrecting the dead, so you just never know what beautiful things He has for those who give thanks… Happy Holidays!