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September 20, 2020 1:25 pm
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Christian when you look back on your Wi-Fi you consume business from a fine proposal with thankfulness. The gardens go to throat the horns of the beverage are more exposed the powerful connection between memory and thankfulness is shown in some withdrawals that help you develop an gratitude is the why should I do thank you for joining us today for the submission of Turning Point were answering some questions that people abashed and today here's the question why should I be thankful what's the big deal about gratitude is just one of many equally important attitudes of life notes not in fact I think it may be the most important attitude you can cultivate in your life.
The attitude of gratitude. When you're grateful. Everything changes when notice it so much during the coronavirus.
There are so many people that I meet every day only want to talk about is everything that can't do all the bad stuff that's happened to turn on the television.
It's almost nonstop. But then there are a few folks you meet who just have a smile on their face and they're just so grateful for everything grateful for a restaurant that's open so you getting on the patio, grateful for friends were still close by for family grateful that nobody they know was sick over and over again if you want to be grateful. You can cultivate the list and if you aren't grateful you will become ungrateful and that leads you down a path of misery and we want to go there so hang in the arena talk about that today, so why should I be thankful. One of the core reasons that stand behind gratitude.
You know sometimes life can feel like a never-ending spinning wheel. The headlines keep coming. The updates never enter the world seems to be moving so quickly in the busyness and constant motion of our culture. Don't forget to take time and remember who God is, in our fast-paced lives. Sometimes it's important just to step back taken a breath of fresh air and focus on the things that are eternal.
That's why I'm so excited about our current resource for the month of September. It's our 2021 calendar colors of creation.
Here we celebrate the magnificence of God's creation with beautiful close-up imagery capturing the detail of Earth's beauty.
This calendar is our way of saying thank you for your gift during the month of September. You have already heard me during this month to be the logic for a calendar in September I'll do it again. Probably before the month is over. But right now, let me encourage you to get this beautiful calendar by sending a gifted Turning Point during the month of September and when you send your gift just ask for the calendar we have them all ready to be shipped.
One will be at your door before you know it when you might think what were talking about today is not appropriate for the times in which we live is so appropriate. You will believe it. This is gratitude.
Why should I be thankful. Charles wrote a gripping tale called the haunted man in his writing. He tells of a chemist set before the fire traveled with unhappy memories as he sat there in dismal reflection phantom appeared and offered the haunted man the opportunity to have his memory destroyed immediately closed with the offer and henceforth was a man not only without a memory but a man who had the power to strip other men of their memories as well. But according to Dick in the story the gift was a big disappointment. So great was the misery that he asked the Phantom to come back and the tale comes to a conclusion with the man's grateful and earnest prayer God keep my memory green keep my memory green memory is a word which is both bitter and sweet. It is a strong argument for the soul and life for life hereafter. Someone has said that memory is the well stored library of the mind memory makes the joys of childhood live again. Memory in the night makes past days to appear all over again. Memory restores the blessedness that once we knew when we saw the Lord and I love this definition, the best memory is the angel with the backward look memory is the key to gratitude. There is a disease that we treat in our culture today that goes by the name amnesia is an interesting word which means actually a without amnesia mind without memory literally means without any memory while it is true that sometimes there are things we wish we could forget. It is also true that it would be very difficult for us to be grateful. People if we could not remember if we could not reflect on what God has done for us in the Psalms are filled with the exhortation for each of us to take that assignment seriously.
Here in Psalm 92 we are instructed that it is a good thing to give thanks to the Lord and to sing praises to your name. Almost hi and to declare your loving kindness in the morning and your faithfulness every night on an instrument of 10 strings on the loot and on the harp with harmonious sound for you Lord have made me glad through your work and I will triumph in the work of your hand. The psalmist said it is a good thing. It is a good thing to give thanks to the Lord. I'd like to reflect with you in three directions. I'd like to ask why it is a good thing to give thanks to the Lord why should I be thankful. What will it do what should I expect from it and first of all I'd like for you to note with me that Thanksgiving and a thankful heart causes us to look upward in the word of God.
We are constantly admonished to give thanks and the word of God usually tells us in the same paragraph of instruction where our Thanksgiving is to be addressed here in the Psalm, which we have open to it says it is a good thing to give thanks to the Lord and to sing praises to your name. Almost hi for you Lord says, verse four have made me glad through your work I will triumph in the work of your hand.
Verse five. Lord, how great are your works and your thoughts are very deep in verse eight, but you Lord you Lord are on high forevermore. Some is an instruction to us that Thanksgiving.
First of all, takes our eyes off of the things that are around us and addresses them upward Thanksgiving really is that which we offer back to God for what he in turn has given to us and it is always an upward look.
Psalm 107 says all that men would praise the Lord for his goodness and for his wonderful works to the children of men and let them sacrifice, the sacrifice of thanksgiving and declare his works with rejoicing. Psalm 107 21 and 22. There have been many who have expressed a spirit of gratitude and we have read about them both in the tales that have been written about our culture here in America and especially in England, and many of the great historical writings and there are many men in the Scripture, about whom we read that they were grateful.
But there is one man who stands out from all the rest and that man is the apostle Paul, I am constantly amazed as I read the letters of the New Testament which are the focus of our study is New Testament believers that Paul is a man who was inoculated with a great spirit of gratitude and I reminded as I say that that he was also the man who suffered greatly who went through many difficult things in his life. And yet at the same time was a man who was filled with gratitude. He constantly focused his attention upon God.
He wrote to the Ephesians, giving thanks always for all things unto God.
He wrote to the Colossians, and whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the father by him. He wrote to the Thessalonians. We give thanks to God always for you. He wrote to young Timothy. I thank Jesus Christ our Lord, who enabled me. He wrote the Philemon.
I thank my God, making mention of the always in my prayer the psalmist. Psalm 92 directs our attention.
First of all upward and I know that seems rather mundane, and perhaps you wonder why we would even mention such a thing. Does it not normally go with the territory that when you come to church. They tell you to think about God. I understand that the very history of the steeple that is seen in most churches is that it points to God and that the picture is that the closer one gets to God.
The smaller he sees himself to be so Thanksgiving is obviously God directed. But isn't it interesting how easily we forget that. And even at Thanksgiving time. We thank each other we spread Thanksgiving in the spirit of gratitude throughout our home. We never really stopped to reflect upon the fact that Thanksgiving first of all, is an upward calling is a gravitational pull in reverse, bringing our praises upward to God, and someone has given us a litany of the things for which we ought to address thanksgiving to God for his sovereign control over our circumstances for his gentle compassion in our sorrows for his consistent faithfulness to our highs and lows for his holy character in spite of our sinfulness is strong know when we needed to hear it for his surprising yes. When we have a lack of faith to believe it for his lies in wait when we were impatient and rash for his commitment to us when we wandered away for his understanding about us when we were confused for his word.
That gives us direction and for his love that holds us close and that's just a smattering of reasons why we should be thankful to God. But secondly, it was good to give thanks not only because it causes us to look up it is good to give thanks because it causes us to look around. Paul was not only grateful to God in all of his writings but he was a man who was into relationships.
He wasn't the longer he's often painted to be. In fact, if you read his letters, he can close out a letter without giving the names of all the people who were with him all the people that he knows you are at the point of destination of the letter and he talks about them with fondness and he mentions their names usually says something about them. And if you read the letters carefully you will see that he is always giving thanks to God for people for friends and from relatives and for people to come alongside to encourage him first of the 21 he says I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications and prayers and intercessions, and the giving of thanks, be made for all men. Classes were to give thanks to God for our friends and for our loved ones. If you read through his epistles, you will see him doing that often acts 2815 says, and from there when the brethren heard of us, they came to meet us: when Paul saw them he thanked God and took courage. Every time Paul was next to somebody who God sent to minister to him. He was filled with gratitude. Romans chapter 6 he writes but God be thanked, that whereas you were servants of sin, you have obeyed from the heart. He thanks God for the people respond to the ministry. If you go through all of his letters, I don't think you'll find one that is not salted with the spirit of gratitude for relationships. I don't think you can undersell the importance of friendship. If you have someone you're close to somebody who's ministering to you. Somebody was put their arm around you, on occasion, someone who may cry and laugh with you, the relationship as you look around is a very very important thing for which to give thanks if you read the epistles you will see that Paul had that kind of incredible fondness for the people who minister to him. I hear him saying in second Timothy to his friends.
I wish I could be with you. I'm sad that you can't be here bring my coat when you come in specially bring my books. You get the pictures you read the letter that Paul wrote that he was very involved in relationships when you look around you can't help but be thankful for relationships because I had one other thing you need to be thankful for circumstances to which you please look back with me for a moment at Psalm 92 and notice how he addresses the subject of gratitude. He says in verse two we are to declare your lovingkindness in the morning and your faithfulness every night. He's chosen the words carefully, at least if there any mirror of my experience when I wake up in the morning. I feel the sense of God's presence in my life and so grateful for the night of rest, if indeed it is been such a night and refresh for the new day and just a sense of God's presence is a Hebrew word is the word acid and if the word translated lovingkindness and it's a rich rich word that just describes the goodness in the graciousness of God in the morning. The psalmist is overwhelmed with God's is lovingkindness, but at night it's a different word. It's his faithfulness of us have not stood on the edge of the day and looking back over the day seen the many places where we could've gotten off the track, many places where if God had not been good to us. We could have truly walked astray and we thank him that he's been faithful to us. But notice this is every day. This is day in and day out in his God's goodness to us morning and night, and there's another place where talks about praising and thanking God at midnight and at noontime in all of our lives, day in and day out would have a spirit of gratitude regardless of the circumstances that I want to suggest to you. Thirdly and finally, the Thanksgiving causes us to look within causes us to look inwardly, can you look back over this year and chart anything that God is not in your life as a grown you up in any way has a worked you over in any way as he strengthens you at the core of who you are when you look back and say boy hasn't been great year for me, but I have learned so much about God.
During this year. One writer reflects the list of inward praises by saying, Lord, thank you for the gift of good health. Thank you for eyes that see the beauty of your creation for years that receive the world of sound surrounding us. Thank you for the special stimulation of taste and touch forehands to work with and legs to walk with for a mind that is curious and creative and competent for memories of past pleasures for heartaches that forced me to rearrange my priorities for broken dreams and lingering afflictions that humbled me for the courage to tell the truth when it really hurt for the determination to finish a demanding task for sense of humor that brought healing and hope and for the sheer delight of knowing and walking with you through another year. You know what I'm just so grateful today that I'm standing behind this place we call the pulpit and still have the privilege of ministry still have the opportunity to open the book of God with you every week. Still have the opportunity to share his truth and to sing his praises until help lead in worship and all of that is because of what God is doing and has done in my heart when I look inward I see the traces of the hand of God in my life. What an incredible thing to be able to observe.
I am not the same man that I was in, though I'm not what I want to be and not what I ought to be. Thank God I'm not what I was a man, do you ever stop to look inward and say, God, thank you for what you done in my life.
First, we look up and then we look around and then we look in and grateful Lewis needs is one of my favorite writers wrote an interesting little book. It's kind of a book that was program for the secular market called a pretty good person when he tried to do in this book was the sort of defiant if you ran into somebody and you said or that guy's a pretty good person will he be like look out of a person is a pretty good person and he has several things he talks about courage and grit and all the sort of thing, but right up front. Interestingly enough, he talks about the fact that a pretty good person is a person with gratitude and he tells a story about something that happened in his life and I want you to listen carefully because I found myself caught up in the spirit of the story and feeling like I had been there a couple of times myself. He said his wife Doris hopped back into our apartment on a frightfully cold December morning and found me collapsed on the tiled kitchen floor of our apartment my face. She told me later, was a dirty gray eyes open. But looking nowhere conveying to her.
Sure, sense of death. She kept her head, checked my pulse and listen for something breathing when she was satisfied that I had enough breath in me the last a few minutes she rushed out to call an ambulance driver hooked me up to their oxygen tank loaded us both aboard skidded us down a country road into the trauma center of the hospital that serves the sturdy people of St. Cloud, Minnesota. The reflects we had pushed each other out of bed early that morning even though it was 30° below zero.
Because we were planning to pack on things to leave Minnesota that day and get moving back to our house in Sierra Madre, California. Doris and I have been living in St. John's University, a stones throw from St. Cloud for a few months and were primed for taking off that next day for California. I had slept poorly, wrote Lewis, bothered by dull aches in my right calf during the night and I got up from bed with a feeling of unease about myself but it being traveling day I tried to ignore it. We pulled some close over our thermal knit underwear eight bowls of hot oatmeal dry cups of black coffee to the public radio for late reports on road conditions. To the south of us were it had been snowing heavily for several days. My unsteadiness did not go away so I decided to curl up on the couch for a few minutes before I got serious about packing. Doris told me that she was going out to get some traveling suggestions from her sister but actually with her intuition for things that might be going wrong.
She went to ask for the name of the doctor that she might call in case I was really as sick as she was afraid I was having gotten the name of the doctor.
She walked back into the kitchen and found me lying near the telephone that had called me off the couch and I was looking quite dead my lungs. It turned out, said Lewis made had been spattered by a buckshot of blood clots and for a couple of days at the hospital. I tilted heavily in debt's direction. On the fourth day, a Norwegian physician by the name of Hans England leaned over my bed and congratulated me on surviving the 20 to 1 odds that medical statistics have stacked up against me when they brought me in all yeah that's terrific dock. I said my heart was not awash with gratitude because I suppose until he told me I was going to live. I had not thought at all about the fact that I was going to die. I close my eyes and went back to sleep and then listen to this, but a couple of nights later in the Moody hush that settles on the hospital room at 2 o'clock in the morning alone and with no drugs inside of me to set me up for it. I was seized with the frenzy of gratitude possessed is the word my arms rose straight up by themselves except 100 pound weight could've not held them to my side. My hands were open. My fingers were spread waving and twisting.
While I bless the Lord, for almost unbearable goodness of being alive on this good earth in this good body at this good time said I was flying outside of myself.
Hi held in weightless lightness as if my earthly existence needed no ground to rest in, but was hung in space with only love to keep it aloft. I was so grateful. It was then said Lewis that I learned that gratitude is the best feeling I would ever feel in all of my life.
It was the ultimate joy of living. It was better than winning the lottery better than watching your daughter graduate from college better and deeper than any other feeling is perhaps the genesis of all other really good feelings in the human repertoire. I am sure he wrote that nothing in life can ever match the feeling of being fully totally, completely grateful. You don't have to promote it or force it. What you have to do is get along with your Bible read a Psalm and then do three things look upward. Look around and look in that since a simple little thing. I was reading both unity about how trainers help us to member things as we get older we need all those. For instance, when I am driving my car in its low on fuel and don't have time to stop and get it filled up before I have an appointment I take a magazine and put it over the top of the steering wheel looks so weird when I did in all yeah I could get some gas and then only as happened to me because I've run out of gas. More than I ever should just because I forget and you know when we put triggers in her life to remember. It has the same effect. Why not do that.
Why not cultivate this attitude of gratitude as you face the next 24 hours tomorrow morning to talk about what to do when trouble overwhelms us and why do when trouble overwhelms me to look at Psalm 27. I hope you'll join us as we move through the patches Scripture together, holding my hands.
The study guide for the series and some hundred and 30 pages of notes and outlines summaries, applications, versus to look up discussion questions to help you in your interaction with others.
Ask about the study guide forgot I need some answers. You call right today and be sure to join us tomorrow right here on this good station. For more information on Dr. Jeremiah's current series going on. Please visit our website really offered to bring light to help you stay connected monthly magazine Turning Point and and daily email sign-up today dear Martha/ready that Jeremiah got old/let you know when you do your copy of their 14 month calendar because of creation highlights going hiking through the gift of Jeremiah study other than the English standard international relations as well as extended a large part in the new King James with helpfulness from the study. Jeremiah visit David Jeremiah.all radio on Gary who join us tomorrow as we conclude on finding some material for taking time to listen to and from these increased in size and