Let's concern ourselves first with the negative idea of thankfulness, unthankfulness. Whole families often just sit down at mealtime and start eating. There is no thought of where the food comes from or who prepared it. If that hits home to you, then you are among the unthankful. Dad and Mom, it's up to you to set the example. We don't expect any thanks from soulless animals, however even a dog will wag it's tail in expectation of food.
Paul, in writing to Timothy, says: "This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come." (The last days began with the birth of Christ and will culminate with His return.) A perilous time indicates that apostasy (backsliding or recidivism) will characterize the final days of the church age.
Being unthankful is just one of the things that Paul mentions to Timothy. He says, "Men- (this includes women) shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, (lovers of what money can buy) boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, UNTHANKFUL, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, (irreconcilable) false accusers, (slanderers) incontinent, (This word has been relegated today to mean a loss of bowel or bladder control but the Biblical meaning is to lack self control over the appetites of the body.) Fierce, (brutal) despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, (reckless) high minded, (haughty) lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away."
If we continue to disregard the idea of prayer before meals and the recognizing of God's provision, perhaps because we are ashamed or don't know a prayer, this won't change His attribute as He will continue to be kind to the unthankful and the evil person. But His long-range plans for us will be greatly diminished.
When Abraham Lincoln inaugurated a Thanksgiving Day, I'm sure he didn't mean that that was the only day in which to give thanks. However, if we have not focused on doing this, it would be a good time to begin.
Let's think now about being thankful. First of all, it doesn't cost anything to be thankful. The giver appreciates thankfulness. God is the giver of all things, so always remember, thankful people make the heart of God, glad.
Let Jane Campbell's words to this beautiful hymn be your family's prayer this Thanksgiving. Read it at the table.
We plough the fields and scatter the good seed on the land,
But it is fed and watered By God's almighty hand,
He sends the snow in winter, the warmth to swell the grain,
The breezes and the sunshine. And soft refreshing rain.
He only is the Maker Of all things near and far,
He paints the wayside flower, He lights the evening star,
The winds and waves obey Him, By Him the birds are fed,
Much more to us, His children, He gives our daily bread.
We thank Thee, then, O Father, for all things bright and good,
The seed-time and the harvest, our life, our health, our food.
No gifts have we to offer for all Thy love imparts,
But that which Thou desirest, our humble, thankful hearts.
Ref: Luke 6:35, 2 Tim. 3:2, The Holy Bible.
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