Peace, Gratitude, Forgiveness- May they be seated at your Table this Thanksgiving

November 21,2022

Colossians 3:15-16 “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.

Paul was writing to Colossians about their attitudes towards one another. In verses 12-15 he describes what their behavior should look like towards one another that would be pleasing to God. “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.” If we are behaving as Paul describes, then we just need to relax and let Christ rule in our hearts bringing peace and unity to our gatherings. Because of the message of Christ, we can worship together and praise God in one accord with extreme gratitude in our hearts.

What if this is not what our homes, families, and churches look like? Then we need to seek God’s help. Hebrews 4:16 “
Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”
God will seek to use us to bring harmony and peace to where we are. He promises His peace to indwell us and knowing that promise we can indeed be thankful. At this opportune time of the year, let us express our thanks to God and to let others know that our THANKFULNESS comes from GOD! Remember, Psalm 107:2 “Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom he has redeemed from trouble.”

A truth to claim with thanksgiving: I am forgiven. You might wonder why I chose this truth for today’s scripture. As my remember my own sin, it brings great thankfulness for God’s forgiveness. I can look at others as ones loved by God who also stand in need of forgiveness. I am reminded of Romans 5:8“but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” God loved me and sent Christ to die for me. That is the center of my thankfulness and heart of gratitude towards God and others. Here are a few other verses about forgiveness: Colossians 1:12-14  and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. 13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”

Micah 7:18-19 is one of my favorites to claim with hope and thanks, “Who is a God like you,
    who pardons sin and forgives the transgression
    of the remnant of his inheritance?
You do not stay angry forever
    but delight to show mercy.
19 You will again have compassion on us;
    you will tread our sins underfoot
    and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea.
Thank you Jesus, my sins are gone!

I also love the image given to us in Isaiah 38:17 “Surely it was for my benefit
    that I suffered such anguish.
In your love you kept me
    from the pit of destruction;

you have put all my sins
    behind your back.”

Let your forgiven heart be open to the needs of others and seek to make peace at your Thanksgiving table. Remember you have His peace within you and can testify to the wonders of His Name.

Linda