For God’s children, thanksgiving is not one day in 365. Thanksgiving is spontaneous, natural…and continuous.
The Spirit of Thanksgiving
Gratitude flows from the river inside. Really, it’s the response of the Holy Spirit in our spirit, rising because it cannot be contained. His thankfulness must be felt and expressed. The Spirit is the living waters and He will flow. When the Spirit is in charge, He will flow and overflow! And it will be thanks giving!
I’m not terribly grateful naturally. I don’t think anyone breathing is consistently grateful or even occasionally thankful. Human nature sees only the lack, the vacuum and the missing.
The glass is only half full and so I know I am still thirsty just by looking at it. I know it isn’t enough and won’t satisfy, so I don’t drink what the glass holds because then there will be the lack in which I solemnly believe. And my point is proven—truly it was not enough. I went wanting. See?
It was the slander of Eden. “God has not given you enough. He has withheld the best. You need that poison fruit, don’t you?” Ingratitude is the whisper of death in your ear and your fallen nature hears, so you are ever disappointed in God and looking for a better one.
I don’t like my shower head. Try to tell me that 90% of the world doesn’t even have running water, much less a shower, and it doesn’t move me. This is me! This is MY shower head and it matters…ooh. There’s no hope for this ‘me’ to LIVE gratefully.
Thanksgiving is LIFE
Do you know what the beginning of sin is? It shocked me when I saw it long ago. From sin to darkness, then to degradation, and finally, evil. All of it begins from the simple issue of ingratitude. The origin of sin is the failure to be thankful…to GOD!
For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks…
Romans 1:21 NASB
So thanksgiving is life and ingratitude is death.
Simple and frightening. Oh, we need many days where we stop life and consider our blessing. But there is something better than a holiday, wonderful as that is. It is having a river of vital life flowing from inside of you, in spite of you.
A river of such inner sustenance that you are never thirsty, never without fresh pouring of life, and that from within you. A river that pours gratitude because it is FULL. Yet this is beyond thanksgiving, because it is worship surging out of you into a testimony of God’s great faithfulness.
In John 4, the woman at the well was thirsty – actually she was desperate for God. Perhaps she didn’t know that but Jesus did. He went out of His way to stop at her well. Jesus offered her that which would “become IN him a well of water springing up to eternal life.” He was speaking about the Holy Spirit and He knew her real soul thirst was for Him.
“Sir, give me that water.” And Jesus was waiting for just that request. We do have to ask. We do have to drink.
A Thanksgiving Testimony
At the end of their conversation, the Samaritan woman went into her town to tell them all about the Christ. Her exuberance was a flow of gratitude. Her testimony was a river of satisfaction—”Come see a man who told me all the things that I have ever done. Can this be the Christ?”
And the Bible says, “From that city many of the Samaritans believed in Him because of the word of the woman who testified…”
That fountain of the Spirit always testifies, ever glorifies. He cannot be silent about the Messiah. And when He, Christ, is lifted up, He will draw all men to HIM. Not to her, the vessel, but to Him. In her fullness, the Samaritan woman simply influenced. Others drank of the living water because she drank.
Tomorrow: RIVER FLOWING