Give Thanks (By Matt Williams)

 We have officially entered the Christmas season, yet my calendar says we’re still 53 days away. And tucked in the middle of all the holiday madness is an often under-noticed holiday…Thanksgiving.
Today, Thanksgiving is nothing more than the last call to line up at the starting line before the gun goes off for Black Friday, Cyber Monday, holiday concerts, end of the year parties, and other holiday festivities (and for heaven’s sake, don’t say “Christmas” – note the sarcasm).
 
We cook all day to eat in 20 minutes so that we can stretch, flex, and warm up for the holiday shopping marathon. Giving thanks has been replaced with grumblings about kitchen duty, fights over the remote to see overpaid and ungrateful “pro” athletes take the pigskin across the goal line, and strategic analysis and planning on which stores to hit first. Now that’s what I call a “Happy Holiday”.
Yet I’m reminded that in Psalm 138:1, it says, “I WILL GIVE you thanks WITH ALL my heart” (emphasis added).
David was bound and determined to give thanks.
He declared it: “I WILL”, with a nothing-is-going-to-stop-me kind of drive. In a sense, David was saying, I won’t let a turkey dinner, an overrated football game, or a doorbuster deal get in the way of me giving thanks.
 
What about you? While we Americans attribute the roots of the holiday back to 1621 and the making of an official holiday to 1863, the origins are really biblical. King David,
a man after God’s own heart, declared, “I WILL GIVE THANKS!” As we prepare for the season, let’s not rush through the turkey like some ravenous animal or be consumed by some sports event or suit up for the kill-or-be-killed shopping spree. Let us take the challenge of David to GIVE THANKS.

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