Famous singer songwriter duo, Don Moen and Paul Wilbur, wrote a beautiful and meditative song years ago titled, “Give Thanks.”
It is a simple cord progression, and the lyrics are easy to remember, but early this morning as I was meditating on the concept of thankfulness and what that really looks like, these poignant words began to play on a loop over and over in my mind.
The Holy Spirit speaks to me sometimes like this, and as I began to break these lyrics down line-by-line, I gained greater perspective on what “giving thanks” actually looks like from a biblical perspective.
“Give thanks with a grateful heart…”
Give thanks with a grateful heart seems like an obvious statement, doesn’t it? Of course my heart should be grateful when I’m thanking someone for something… if not, I’m just going through the motions.
Still, although the concept is simple, the follow through is the difficult part. How often do we mumble a prayer of thanksgiving over our meal or as an obligatory opening or closing prayer for services? Are we truly grateful? Or are we just going through the motions?
“Give thanks to the Holy One…”
There are moments in every Believer’s life where we understand and are consciously aware of the Holy nature of God. And then there are moments, weeks, months… dare I say, years, that we forget too. He is Holy. Despite the circumstances, He is Holy and deserving of our praise.
“Give thanks because He's given Jesus Christ, His Son… ”
The revelation of the cross, the death and resurrection of Yeshua our Messiah is one that is not always an easy one to grasp. I find that there is something in the spirit of person that responds much quicker to His sacrifice, while it may take much longer for our mind, will, and emotions to catch up.
I personally pray on a regular basis for a greater revelation of the significance of His death and resurrection. As He continues to reveal to me the depth of that decision, my heart and flesh cry out in thanksgiving.
“And now let the weak say, ‘I am strong.’ Let the poor say, ‘I am rich because of what the Lord has done for us…’”
This is such a powerful statement, and the culmination of all of the above. After we choose to come before the Lord in true thanksgiving, honoring the holiness of Father God, through the power of the Holy Spirit we are able to better grasp the life-giving sacrifice that was made in the death of Yeshua.
When we have a revelation that He bore our sin, our sicknesses, “the chastisement of our peace was on His shoulders.” When we understand that He is strong in every area that we are weak, He made atonement for these areas in our lives. It is then, and then only, that we discover the great riches bestowed upon us. It is in Him that we live and have our being. It is because of Him that we have eternal life.
As I was dwelling on this revelation the impact of the above seemed to hit me in a new wave of understanding. The simplicity of it sometimes makes us forget the deeper treasure hidden beneath the surface.
This gentle reminder from the Holy Spirit brought great strength and encouragement. More importantly, a wave of His love began to wash over those stony places in my heart where bits and pieces of ingratitude had begun to replace tillable soil.
We recently celebrated the American holiday, Thanksgiving. Each year we gather together and celebrate the harvest season by inviting family and friends over to eat a delicious meal. We take time out during that time to share what we’re thankful for, and this year as we celebrated with our loved ones, my heart was extremely full.
This season consistently reminds me about the importance of setting aside time to celebrate and give thanks for all that the Lord has done. It restores our hearts and reminds us of what we have, and not what we lack.
The impact of gratitude is far more significant than any of us can possibly fathom, but I will tell you this, it is one of the most significant weapons of spiritual warfare there is. Why? Because when we choose to focus on the positive instead of the negative, then we really cannot be defeated. The areas of want in our lives cannot rule over us, because in our greatest weakness we know that He is strong. It is a moment of trust to exchange the pain of disappointment for thanksgiving and praise, but it is this simple little act that breaks down strongholds. It is through the praise of His people that we are victorious.
It is my personal goal that this year will be a year of thanksgiving. Every day, I want to dwell on something of value and merit. I want to give thanks with a grateful and sincere heart. I desire that every day there is a moment when I take time out to praise the God of Abraham who has done wondrous things for each one of us!
Although the traditional holiday has passed, we at Curt Landry Ministries would like to challenge you to live a life of thanksgiving. May this year be the best one you’ve experienced yet, and may the God of perfect Shalom rest with you in this next season of time.
Marisa Fritzemeier has attended House of David since 2010. Over the years she has been honored to serve the house in various capacities. It has been her greatest privilege to join them on multiple trips to Israel and neighboring nations. Marisa spends much of her time working with children. She has a BFA in Theatre from Emporia State, and has spent much of her life dedicated to exploring various artistic mediums. She is passionate about developing art programing with Kingdom purposes. In her spare time, Marisa also works for a digital marketing team building websites and developing advertising for small businesses across the globe. It is her highest honor to know Yeshua as her personal savior, and it is with great joy that she serves Him daily.