Thankfulness and Prayer
// Charlie DeTellis
We naturally think about our blessings during the Thanksgiving holiday season.
This year, I will be in New England with my family. I enjoy sitting at our dining room table with a nice roasted turkey—and all of the trimmings—looking at the faces of my family. We have a time of prayer thanking the Lord for His provision and protection. We are to be content in whatever state we find ourselves. Spending time with family during the holidays is always sacred for me, as I am away from most of my children for a significant part of the year, due to them being away at college and the fact that I am in Haiti most of the year. I thank the Lord for my wife, Rachel, and our four children. I thank the Lord that each of them is following the Lord. I thank the Lord for His strength in my life as I continue to serve Him.
The book of Philippians instructs us to have a mindset of thanksgiving, prayer and supplication. “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your request be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7
We need to be faithful in our prayer time. “The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.” (James 5:16) I have a friend who is a rough character. I pray for him, and recently I have seen ongoing positive changes in his life. In the past he has really offended me, and at times he will make derogatory remarks. I decided as much as possible to not be offended by him, and to keep loving and praying for this friend. I keep giving him gifts and showing love towards him. He now tells me that all of his other friends have left Haiti and that I am like a brother to him. I thank the Lord for the friends that are in my life. We need to show love to one another.
We are also to bring our supplications before God. We have all experienced trials and victories in life. We need to believe God for all things. There is nothing too difficult for the Lord to do. We need to continually bring all of our concerns before the Lord. I Thessalonians 5:16-18 says, “Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” I believe in a season of time you will have the victory.
We need to be people with thankful hearts. Are you thankful? Are you thankful for your current stage of life? Are you thankful that you know the Lord? Are you thankful for those who raised you and poured into your life? What about your friends…your job? Being thankful might be difficult while in the midst of a storm, but there is ALWAYS something to be thankful for. It’s a state of mind—just like your attitude. Charles Swindoll said it best: “Words can never adequately convey the incredible impact of our attitudes toward life. The longer I live the more convinced I become that life is 10 percent what happens to us and 90 percent how we respond to it.” There is power in a thankful heart. ~Charlie DeTellis