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Don’t Thank Me

What does November mean to you? Perhaps a beloved’s birthday; maybe falling foliage, flying footballs, and a family feast? For some, it’s an awfully annoying amount of confusion.

In America, the most obvious highlight in November is Thanksgiving Day. The seeds of this official holiday sprouted in 1789 with George Washington’s Thanksgiving Proclamation. The original manuscript was being auctioned at Christie’s in New York on the 14th for about $12 million. Some well-to-do collector will see great value in this historic document. President Washington saw great value in the need to thank God for His blessings.

Bart Simpson once prayed, “Dear God. We paid for all this stuff ourselves, so thanks for nothing.” What this profane painted personality fails to see with his penciled-in pupils is that God deserves thanks, not just for our food but absolutely everything! Let’s add it all up:

“You shall remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you power to get wealth” (Deuteronomy 8:18). “You cause the grass to grow for the livestock and plants for man to cultivate, that he may bring forth food from the earth” (Psalm 104:14).

The apostle Paul used an agricultural analogy to illustrate the work of the gospel: “I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth” (1 Corinthians 3:6-7). Man can work as hard as he can, but if God doesn’t bring results, the work is in vain.

“Every generous act of giving, with every perfect gift, is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change” (James 1:17, NRSV). Even the act of giving is energized by God. “What do you have that you did not receive? If then you received it, why do you boast as if you did not receive it (1 Corinthians 4:7)?

In light of the goodness of the Father of lights, this is how we should live:

“Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Ephesians 5:20). “And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him” (Colossians 3:17). Although we may not understand what is going on in and around us, we can be thankful that God is a loving Father.

Notice that the thankful posture is linked to our standing in Jesus Christ. Speaking of those who, have accepted and responded to the gospel of Christ, were motivated to give generously to the poor, Paul cries, “Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!” (2 Corinthians 9:15) Better by far than the Corinthians’ generosity was the grace of God wrapped in the gift of salvation through the Son of God.

The fruit and higher purpose of giving thanks‒to anyone and for anything‒is for our thanks-giving to abound to the glory of God (Luke 17; 2 Corinthians 9:10 – 15).

Let us not just be grateful for our plateful, but let us live in an attitude of gratitude!

Alan Allegra is a freelance Christian writer in Pennsylvania. Contact me at

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