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When There’s Not Much to be Thankful for this Thanksgiving

This year will be the first Thanksgiving for my wife Leanne without a living parent. Meanwhile, this will be the first Thanksgiving for me without my sister Kathie who is battling blood clots and cancer. While my parents are still living, each have been hindered by a slew of health-related issues in 2022. Subsequently, when there’s not much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving, you have to find a siler lining.

Speak out to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, offering praise with voices [[e]and instruments] and making melody with all your heart to the Lord, 20 At all times and for everything giving thanks in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God the Father, Ephesians 5:20.

One of the ways the apostle Paul remained thankful in the midst of trials was through music. Rather than click on a car stereo or You-Tube, Paul writes about singing his favorite songs from church. Whether you’re humming a chorus in your head, playing an instrument or raising your voice in song, singing has a way of taking a mental break from any pain you’re currently experiencing. Anyone who dwells upon biblically based lyrics will be elevated toward a more thankful spirit.

Be happy [in your faith] and rejoice and be glad-hearted continually (always); 17 Be unceasing in prayer [praying perseveringly]; 18 Thank [God] in everything [no matter what the circumstances may be, be thankful and give thanks], for this is the will of God for you [who are] in Christ Jesus [the Revealer and Mediator of that will]. 19 Do not quench (suppress or subdue) the [Holy] Spirit, 1 Thessalonians 5:16-19.

If this doesn’t work, Paul urges Christians to turn to prayer. This shouldn’t be haphazard. Instead, prayer should become a state of mind, unceasing throughout your day. Paul suggests that praying is a means to will yourself toward a thankful heart. Unfortunately, the root of bitterness has a way of ruining the mood to pray. Once prayer ceases minds turn their attention away from the Lord and race to anxiety, doubt and worry. If you’re struggling this Thanksgiving to be thankful, may the advice in the passages above turn your week around.

by Jay Mankus

Manifestions of Thanksgiving

When I write about subjects or topics foreign to me, I try to reference experts in their fields.  Prior to becoming King of Israel, David was a harpist.  Biblical accounts reveal David was hired by King Saul.  According to the prophet Samuel, David was called into the king’s room whenever Saul was being oppressed by demonic spirits.  The sound was so pleasing to Saul’s ears that these spirits would disperse soothing the king’s soul.

Addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart, Ephesians 5:19.

Today, music has the same affect on me, serving as motivation or simply uplifting my spirits.  Music is so powerful that some teenagers can’t concentrate, think or sleep without music playing in the background.  Yet, one of Lucifer’s nicknames is the angel of song.  Thus, everyone needs to be careful of the content played.  Any sort of subtle compromise can open the door for foreign spirits to enter your life.

He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the Lord, Psalm 40:3.

To nullify this surprise attack, the apostle Paul encourages individuals to make melodies in their hearts to God.  Whether this is in the form of humming, singing or whistling, this practice results in a spirit of thanksgiving.  Although some may attempt to fake this practice, replaying positive lyrics within your minds can and will alter your mood.  Those who develop a mindset for songs of worship and praise will begin to display manifestations of thanksgiving.

by Jay Mankus

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