Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview


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Living a Life of Thankfulness


I’ve read a lot of books about prayer, including a few about “The Lord’s Prayer”. Probably the best book I’ve read on prayer is Prayer: Experiencing Awe and Intimacy with God by Tim Keller. In that book Keller states that there are many different ways to organize our prayers. I often use the ACTS method for my prayers. In ACTS, the “A” stands for adoration, “C” stands for confession, “T” stands for thanksgiving and “S” stands for supplication, or request. Many times I’ve found that our prayers jump right to supplication. I like the ACTS model because it starts with adoration.
I want to address the “T” in ACTS – thanksgiving. The Bible tells us to “give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Thessalonians 5:18). I think being thankful is an aspect of prayer that we (or at least I) tend to overlook. I think thankfulness and contentment tend to go together, when we are thankful we are also content. What would it look like if we lived a life of thankfulness? Here are five great verses from the Bible about being thankful:

  • Oh give thanks to the LORD, for He is good; for His steadfast love endures forever! 1 Chronicles 16:34
  • And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Colossians 3:15
  • 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
  • Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. Colossians 4:2
  • Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. Philippians 4:6

I recently enjoyed spending some time thinking about what I am thankful for, the blessings in my life. Here are a few of them:

  1. Being saved through Christ (salvation).
  2. My immediate family – wife, parents, brother, sister, and my extended family.
  3. State Farm for a nearly 38-year career and all of the wonderful people I worked with.
  4. Our dog Molly, an Alaskan Malamute.
  5. Our church, pastors, elders and deacons.
  6. Covenant Seminary.
  7. Our home.
  8. The Bible and other good books to read.
  9. Music to listen to.
  10. Watching movies.
  11. Good health.
  12. Friends.
  13. St. Louis Cardinal baseball.
  14. Ligonier Ministries and R.C. Sproul.
  15. God’s creation.

Take some time and reflect on what you are thankful for in your life and click on ‘Leave a comment’ to let us know.

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A Prayer for Thanksgiving Day


Let us come into His presence with thanksgiving;
let us make a joyful noise to Him with songs of praise!
For the Lord is a great God,
and a great King above all gods

Psalm 95: 2-3

 

Heavenly Father, we have once again come to the holiday season, beginning with Thanksgiving Day. As I get older, it’s incredible how fast time flies. And I’ve been told by many that life will just continue to move faster and faster! Help me to live each day for You and enjoy each day, not always looking to what is next.
For some, Thanksgiving Day is all about a few days off of work, eating turkey, watching football and stores opening early for “Black Friday” deals. Just thinking about all of the work to prepare a large meal, and the idea of all of the responsibilities and activities of the Christmas season ahead can be quite overwhelming. Help us Father to focus on those things that are most important, and not get pulled into all that the world expects of us during this time of year.
For some, there will be the joy of hugging beloved family members that we only get to see a few times a year. We pray for great celebrations as we share stories of what You are doing in our lives. For others, however, thinking of seeing family members may be stirring up feelings of anxiety because of past hurts and pain. We pray for renewed and healed relationships that only You can facilitate.
And yet for others, Thanksgiving may be a sad and lonely day because loved ones are gone and the day will be spent by yourself. We pray that they can reach out to other lonely people in kindness.  We acknowledge Father, that for some of us, the holidays are the best time of the year, and yet for others they are the absolute worst, and we can’t wait for them to be over. We pray for those for whom Thanksgiving and the Christmas season will be sad and lonely, and ask that You would provide divine opportunities for us to bless others during this time of the year.
For Christians, we know that we have much to be thankful for. At the top of that list is the gift of Your Son, who You sent to save us. May we use this season to prepare our hearts to celebrate his birth.
We are thankful for all that you have blessed us with, including our families and friends, health, jobs and homes.

I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart;
I will recount all of your wonderful deeds.
Psalm 9:1

Thank you, Father, for all that You have blessed us with. We pray for safe travels for the many who will be traveling to see family over the coming days.
Please cultivate in our hearts a spirit of gratitude and contentment.
In Jesus’ precious name we pray, Amen.

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