To practice gratitude intentionally changes an individual life, to be sure. It also changes the character of a congregation. When Christians practice gratitude, they come to worship not just to “get something out of it,” but to give thanks and praise to God. Stewardship is transformed from fundraising to the glad gratitude of joyful givers. The mission of the church changes from ethical duty to the work of grateful hands and hearts. Prayer includes not only our intercessions and supplications, but also our thanksgivings at the table.
Good Folks, it is Friday, March 18, 2016. Sunday begins our journey in Holy Week. You do not want to miss the special services on Thursday and Friday at 7:00 p.m., plus the children’s activities on Holy Saturday.
I came across this paragraph in a recent reading for a sermon. The words just “came out and hit me.” Not that I have not subscribed to these very same thoughts and words, but the way this author wrote these words…so that the reader had to be reminded of what Christians have been given and a response that brings glory to God (Soli Deo Gloria).
It is good to remember, even when at times it could be painful. It is during this season of Lent that often takes me to my parent’s fish market where on this one day my brother Charlie and I filleted–no joke here–5,000 pounds of fish. We had several sharpened knives ready, gloves to hold the fish while we filleted them and an area where we would concentrate on the task before us. The fish averaged some 15 pounds in weight each, so we did not have small fish to fillet.
In all our years in the fish market, why my father bought that much fish at one time seemed crazy, but he always had a plan. It was a long day when we finished. Bone tired. Exhausted. The knife had become “one with my hand” so that my mom had to pull back my fingers to remove it. Memories.
Our journey in faith is not always one racked with “peaches and crème” moments; however, God promises when we journey into our ownJerusalem’s of life, knowing good-and-well that it will not be a good day, we are not alone. I thank God for the community of faith, our friends and family. And I thank God for being God, and for Christ for paying the price of my sin.
I want to always live with a heart of gratitude and gratefulness, even when my fingers have to be pulled back to remove the knife. Lest we forget,tomorrow will be another day to fillet more fish. Sharpen your knife. The Lord needs you ready.
Blessings from Duncanville,
First Corinthians 15:58 – Go for it!