Wednesday, October 3, 2012

A Thankful Heart

       How important thanksgiving is!!  It is so important we get this deep into our spirits!  But how quickly I forget!  I need to be reminded again and again so I am adding this from Francis Frangipane so I can read it as often as I need to.

A Thankful Heart by Francis Frangipane
(En EspaƱol)
A Thankful Man is a Humble Man
       If you think you know God but do not live your life in gratitude before Him, it is doubtful that you really knew Him in the first place.  A thankful heart honors God.  Too often when people say they "know God," what we actually mean is they know facts about God.  But we should ask ourselves, "Do I truly know Him?"
       Paul warns that just knowing doctrines about God is not enough to enter eternal life. He said,  "For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.  For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks; but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened" (Rom. 1:20-21).
       Even though we may know God, if we do not "honor Him as God or give thanks" to Him in our daily walk, our minds darken.  When we are in that hardened, ungrateful state of mind, every word we speak is a spark lit by hell, set to destroy the quality of our lives (James 3:6).
       H. W. Beecher said, "Pride slays thanksgiving . . . a proud man is seldom a grateful man, for he never thinks he gets as much as he deserves."  We should be thankful that we do not get what we deserve!
      When God gives us less than we desire, it is not because He is teaching us poverty; what He is teaching us is thankfulness.  You see, life - real life - is not based upon what we amass but on what we enjoy.  Even in difficult circumstances God still gives us much to appreciate. We fail to see what the Lord has provided because our hearts are wrong.
        Someone once said, "When I see a poor man who is grateful, I know if he were rich, he would be generous."  A thankful spirit is akin to a generous spirit, for both appreciate and receive the riches of God.  When we are thankful with little, God can entrust us with much.
Out of Zion God Has Shown Forth
      "The Mighty One, God, the Lord, has spoken, and summoned the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting. Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty, God has shone forth" (Ps. 50:1-2).
     The Lord desires to shine forth out of Zion.  It is this God, who beautifies His creation with His presence, who is calling us into covenant He says, "Gather My godly ones to Me, those who have made a covenant with Me by sacrifice" (Ps. 50:5).

      To make a covenant with someone is to enjoin ourselves in the most solemn bonds of unity.  A covenant is more than a promise; it is the pledge of two lives to live as one.  The union God seeks with us is called a covenant of sacrifice.
      This covenant is not a ritual form of worship; it is not the Jewish sacrifice of bulls and goats.  It transcends time and methodology and reaches to every soul who longs for the living God. It is a covenant of thanksgiving.  He says, "He who offers a sacrifice of thanksgiving honors Me; and to him who orders his way aright I shall show the salvation of God" (Psalm 50:23).
      The terms of the covenant are simple:  We pledge to thank Him and adore Him in everything; He pledges to shine forth from our lives in the perfection of beauty.  It is a sacrifice of thanksgiving, for it will cost us to praise Him when we hurt.  But to do so is part of our healing and the beginning of our salvation.
      Begin to thank Him. Name the gifts He has given you, starting with the blessing of life itself.  When we thank Him, we are honoring Him.
      Today God is calling for His people to enter into a covenant bond with Him - a covenant where we pledge to live a thankful life and He pledges His life to shine forth through us.  This covenant of thanksgiving is the key that shuts and bolts the door to demonic oppression in a person's life.  It is a glorious gate into the shelter of the Most High God.

Blessed Lord, I come this day to covenant with You. By Your grace, I will be thankful regardless of what my life seems. You have given me so much. Forgive me for complaining! This day, I make a covenant of thanksgiving. In Jesus' name. Amen.

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