Giving Thanks — November 8

“This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of God’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God.
2 Corinthians 9:12 (NIV)

As I prepare to share prayer-based resources at the International Conference on Missions next week, I am thankful for the ministry partners that make Impact Prayer Ministry possible.  God’s calling, gifting, and equipping is important, but life and ministry isn’t done in a vacuum.  While I am the face people see wherever the prayer ministry display is set up, it is actually the ministry partners I have which supply the needs that are being met by the resources being provided.  I am thankful for the Deer Run Church of Christ, the North Wayne Mennonite Church, and numerous individuals who financially partner with Impact Prayer Ministry in a way that results in many expressions of thanks to God by those receiving encouragement from the prayer-based resources.

Some of my favorite “expressions of thanks to God” at these conferences have come from convention center workers who probably didn’t expect much to be thankful for when they arrived at work to start their shift.  Very few of them will take a devotional book they are looking at the first time it is offered.  I suspect part of it is their training and instruction from their employer that the convention displays are not for them.  But when I watch their face light up at a kind and simple greeting, I think part of their hesitation is that they are so used to being unseen.  I have had workers take a couple books for themselves, then come back throughout the conference with different coworkers who are all thanking God that I would share with them.

But it is not just the financial partners which result in praise and thanksgiving being offered to God.  Whether setting up a display at a convention or teaching a prayer seminar for a church or group, people often ask the same question; “How can you do what you are doing?”.  The answer they receive is always the same.  One, I have a God who has equipped me for this work.  Two, I have a family that supports and encourages me in this work.  Three, I have a church that believes in what God is doing in and through the prayer ministry.  Four, I have people who willingly give financially so that others can be encouraged to pray.  And last, but not least, I am surrounded by people who make sure my day to day work gets done when the prayer ministry takes me away from home.  All of that is possible because I serve a God who “supplies all my needs according to His riches in glory.”  Because He is the supplier of all five of those reasons for how I can do what I am doing, He is the One who gets and deserves all of the praise and thanksgiving for anything I accomplish!

It is my prayer that the works of service you and I do would always be done in such a way that they result in many overflowing expressions of thanksgiving to God!  To God be the glory, both now and forevermore!

In prayer,
Tom  

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