Thanksgiving. What is the first thing that comes to mind when you read or hear that word? Is it a day, a family meal, or perhaps a specific menu of foods? Is it an attitude that comes and goes based on how you feel? Or is it a way of life which flows from you regardless of your circumstances? These devotions I will be sharing this month were originally written throughout November 2019 and then edited/updated during the summer of 2020 for a 31 day devotional journal, “The Heart of Thanksgiving: Living a Life of Thankfulness”. I will be re-sharing them here this month to encourage each of us to pursue a greater spirit of thankfulness in all we do.
Here is day twenty-one with an important reminder that living with a heart of thanksgiving should cause us to be thankful that God created us with great value.
Thankful For Value
“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?”
Matthew 6:25-27 (NIV)
As I continue a series of posts on giving thanks, today I am thankful for a God who sees value in me — enough value that in Jesus He has provided what I truly need. Life on this earth is temporary, so the needs that we have while we live this life will never be as vital to our well-being as our need for Jesus. I am thankful that God can see me at my worst and still considers me more valuable than the birds of the air. I am thankful that God reminds me that there are things that should be more important to me than food and clothing.
I am also thankful for God’s provision. I have not always had what I wanted, and have not even always had what I thought I needed, but God has always provided Himself whether I was in a time of plenty or a time of want. I am thankful that He provides reminders in the midst of creation, and often right outside my office window, of His presence and great love. I am thankful that I can see so much variety in the way God has clothed creation and given each part of the wildlife kingdom unique and fitting ways to gather food needed to survive. I am thankful that God has provided me with gifts and abilities that when used allows Him to provide for me, my family, and others; and He also provides for me through His gifting in others when I can’t go it alone.
As you pray, ask God to fill you with a knowledge of the great value you have to Him. Pray that you would live as one who has great value. Pray that an awareness of your value would help you to see each person around you as having the same great value as one who has been created in God’s image. Pray that you would trust God more fully as you consider all He has given and done because of His great love. Pray that God’s love expressed toward you would change the way you value and love others. Pray that you would learn the secret of contentment as you find God, and the value He places on you, to be enough.
I pray that you and I would continually learn a greater trust in God as we grow in our understanding of just how valuable we are to Him. I pray that we would see how He has provided for us in ways that are beyond what we can fully comprehend. I pray that we would know the fullness of His provision even when we lack things we think we need. I pray that we would not only experience the provision of God, but would be involved as His instruments in sharing His provisions with others.