Posted by: pastormikemcdowell | February 9, 2015

February 9, 2015 “And The Award Goes To…”

“Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him, bless His name.” (Psalm 100:4)

“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”  (1 Thessalonians 5:18)

Good Morning Everyone! This is the day the Lord has made, so let’s rejoice and be glad in it!

Around this time of year, when the academy award nominated films are announced, certain networks begin showing films from days gone by that were also winners or nominated for the highest awards of that industry. One of my favorites that is broadcast from time to time is a drama set in the days of the Civil War starring Jimmy Stewart as a single parent heading a household of six sons, a daughter, and a daughter-in-law. The film is called Shenandoah. The plot of the film is interesting, but I’m not going to visit that particular aspect of the film today. Instead, I’d like to focus on one short scene from the movie and how it relates to the scripture referenced from the 100th Psalm. In the scene, Charlie Anderson (Stewart) and his family are all seated around the dinner table. As is their custom, they have a word of blessing before beginning to dine. Charlie offers a most unusual but revealing prayer to the Almighty. This is his prayer of “thanksgiving”…

 ” Lord, we cleared this land. We plowed it, sowed it, and harvest it. We cook the harvest. It wouldn’t be here and we wouldn’t be eating it if we hadn’t done it all ourselves. We worked dog-bone hard for every crumb and morsel, but we thank you Lord just the same for the food we’re about to eat, amen.”

To God be the glory? Charlie’s prayer is sadly amusing and is exemplary of far too many “praises” offered to God each day. Ours is more like that of the announcer at the academy awards presentation who opens the envelope and says “And the award for best achievement in life goes to…ME!” Many of us are of the attitude that those things we possess are a result of our labors alone, with God as an afterthought. The directive of giving thanks to God occurs 57 times in the Bible, found in both the Old and New Testaments. Developing an attitude of thanks honors God and blesses us as well. Pastor A.W. Tozer speaks of it with eloquence when he writes,

“Gratitude is an offering precious in the sight of God, and it is one that the poorest of us can make and be not poorer but richer for having made it.”  

It is a precious offering from the heart that even the poorest of the poor can make, becoming all the richer in the offering. Such is the incalculable value of thanksgiving. The Psalmist says, “Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and His courts with praise.”  Let’s pray!

Worthy Lord; Thank You for Your manifold blessings. You have given us a glorious new day to rejoice in Your goodness and grace. You have provided us with everything we need…our daily bread. You have shown us mercy beyond measure, love beyond comprehension. For these and all Your blessings, we give You thanks and praise in Jesus’ Holy Name. Amen!



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