Thanksgiving – family devotion

Index of Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday posts

Happy Thanksgiving!

Before or after watching A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving, discuss some scriptures about giving thanks:

1. Psalm 50:23. What may we do that will prepare our hearts to see God’s salvation revealed?

“He who sacrifices thank offerings honors me, and he prepares the way so that I may show him the salvation of God.”

2. 2 Corinthians 1:10-11. What results when God delivers us?

“We have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us, as you help us with your prayers. Then many will give thanks on our behalf for the gracious favor granted us in answer to the prayers of many.”

3. Romans 1:21. If we do not give God thanks, what is the condition of our hearts? What kind of conclusions then result from thankless thinking?

“For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God, nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.”

4. Colossians 2:6-7. Did it seem “natural” to give God thanks when we first encountered Christ? Is it equally “natural” or a part of my lifestyle now?

“So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thanksgiving.”

5. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18. In what circumstances are we to give God thanks?

“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

(Cf. Romans 8:28; Habakkuk 3:16-19.)

6. Ephesians 5:19-20. How often are we to give God thanks? For what are we to give God thanks?

“Speak to one another with Psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

7. Philippians 4:4-7. In times of need, to deal with our anxiety, how can we express our thanksgiving?

“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

8. John 11:1-45; especially verses 33, 35, 38, and 41.

  • For what did Jesus give thanks in this difficult circumstance?
  • Is this something for which we may likewise give thanks, no matter what the circumstance?
  • Can we give thanks and weep at the same time?
  • Why are we not to accept whatever comes our way stoically, or fatalistically; that is, why is it not a Christ-like practice to discipline ourselves so that we eliminate all desires and longings for things to be different than they are?
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