Today is Thanksgiving Day in the United States. We celebrate it with food, family, and fun, and think about all the good things we have in a world of bad things. It’s a reminder for us to count our blessings in a time when curses seem to be the norm.
But for the Christian, gratitude is the very core of our faith. When a person comes to Jesus in faith and is saved, that person should live a life of gratitude to God for not leaving us the eternal victims of this current Satanic world system. What we have now in this life is not the complete rescue we will eventually have, but a “down payment” (2 Cor. 1:22, 5:5, Eph. 1:14). So in this life, we Christians are as subject to the wicked kingdom of Satan as the rest of the world. And because of that, we often forget that every good thing, the tiniest glimmer of hope, is a reason to be grateful, since a world run by Satan should have nothing good in it at all. It is these little bits of good that prove the limitations and temporary nature of that wickedness.
Knowing all this, Christians should live every day in gratitude, rather than only thinking about such things once a year. Especially in the US, we should remember that our worst suffering pales in comparison to that which is being experienced by some parts of the world. Along with our gratitude for blessings, we must remember every day to pray and do what we can for those who have less reason to celebrate or even have a glimmer of hope. The world has yet to see a united church make relentless public outcry against the oppression of our sisters and brothers in other countries. Individuals and small organizations do so, but the majority of Christians seem indifferent to the plight of others. And when overt persecution comes to our shores, there will be no one left to help or care.
As the saying goes, we aren’t in this world to “sit on our blessed assurance”; we’re here to make a difference. Not by rioting, not by reproducing like rabbits, not by supporting politicians who only give lip service to our values, but by each of us taking our faith and each other seriously. Look beyond the daily grind, beyond the mainstream news, and beyond comfortable routines. Action begins with attitude, and a grateful attitude comes from knowing our Savior and looking forward to eternity. Be more than a hamster in a cage.