Throughout scripture we are taught to give thanks to God. There are more references to giving thanks and bringing an offering than I can mention in this brief blog. Here are a few that quickly come to mind:
“Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name” (Psalm 100:4 KJV).
“Give unto the Lord the glory due unto his name: bring an offering, and come before him: worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness” (1 Chronicles 16:20 KJV).
“And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him” (Colossians 3:17 KJV).
In 2 Chronicles 29 we have an account of a time when the temple was cleansed during the reign of Hezekiah. He called on the Levites to sanctify themselves and the house of the Lord. Hezekiah called for repentance and for worship. After the work was completed, there was a time of worship with burnt offerings and sacrifices were made for the atonement of sin. We must not miss what came next.
“Then Hezekiah answered and said, Now ye have consecrated yourselves unto the Lord, come near and bring sacrifices and thank offerings into the house of the Lord” (2 Chronicles 29:31a KJV). From this we are reminded that cleansing from sin should be followed by thanksgiving to God and thank offerings.
We who have trusted Jesus as our Savior have been forgiven and our response should be thankfulness. At this season of Thanksgiving, let us not miss the opportunity to give thank offerings to the Lord. Let me suggest several avenues that you might give a Thank Offering this month.
The Thanksgiving Offering for Sunrise Children’s Services is received each November and supports the work of Sunrise in caring for abused and neglected children. You can give through your local church and designate an offering for Sunrise. Thanksgiving offering envelopes are also available for giving to Sunrise.
Disaster Relief Assistance through Baptist Global Response. BGR leads Southern Baptist efforts to respond to disasters and chronic needs around the world. BGR is at work in the Philippines and other locations meeting needs. We will work with BGR in 2014 through the Bucket Project, taking hospice care items to families caring for those with AIDS. Learn more about Baptist Global Response at www.gobgr.org.
Place a thank offering in a Kentucky WMU Heritage Fund Mite Box. Mite boxes were distributed at the 2013 Kentucky WMU Annual Meeting and will be brought to the Friday afternoon session of our 2014 Annual Meeting. In an earlier blog about mite boxes and their history in WMU, I shared a mite box challenge from years ago: How shall we use the mite box? Keep one for your own use…let it be a constant reminder of the daily, ordinary blessings of your life. Put one where friendly eyes can see it; let it remind them of duty and privilege. Treat it as a sacred thing (this feeling will grow upon you). Encourage children to use it, and be ready to answer their questions about it.
When mite boxes were used as the primary means of saving for missions, WMU members were challenged to give sacrificially, but also thankfully. When some blessing came, the women were encouraged to express their thanks to God by placing an offering in the mite box. On mite box day, the missionary society members brought their gifts, saved all year that expressed their thanks to God as well as their commitment to support missions around the world.
Even though many retailers skip from Halloween to Christmas, let us not be guilty of thanklessness by skipping Thankgiving. And don’t forget to be thankful for the basics of life as well. The song “Thank You, Lord, For Your Blessings On Me” by the Easter Brothers is a great reminder. (Thank you, Nora Carr, for singing this song from your heart at Clayvillage Baptist Church!)
As the world looks upon me, as I struggle along
They say I have nothing, but they are so wrong
In my heart I’m rejoicing, how I wish they could see
Thank you Lord, for your blessings on me
There’s a roof up above me
I’ve a good place to sleep
There’s food on my table
And shoes on my feet
You gave me your love Lord
And a fine family
Thank you Lord, for your blessings on me