According to a recent AAA survey, 112 million American traveled 50 miles or more to celebrate Christmas in 2018. Like most holidays, airports and highways will be packed as families travel back and forth from these destinations. Yet, how many arrived safely without incident? Furthermore, how many individuals gave thanks to God upon arriving?
“Being thus arrived in a good harbor and brought safe to land, they fell upon their knees and blessed the God of heaven, who had brought them over the vast and furious ocean,” William Bradford, 1620.
The quote above seems applicable for any trip that you take. In an exhibit dedicated to Pilgrims at the Museum of the Bible, Bradford’s recollection of the Pilgrim’s landfall upon Plymouth Rock reveals the faith of those who set sail across the Atlantic. Apparently, the Mayflower experienced rough seas, squalls and unsettling weather. Nonetheless, when this journey was complete, God received the credit for arriving safely.
Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge his name, Hebrews 13:15.
As someone who has driven nearly one million miles behind the wheel of a car, my appreciation for God is lacking. Sure, when road conditions are treacherous I cry out to the Lord, but rarely do I thank God when I arrive. As I travel back home in the morning, I need to apply the passage above. Praise should be continual, daily and genuine. Instead of taking credit for keeping my family safe, I need to thank angels, divine intervention and God’s mercy for watching over me and my family. Perhaps, we can all learn from the Pilgrims, with a reason to celebrate the little things in life.
by Jay Mankus