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Naturally at Thanksgiving, we take stock of all the great and wonderful things that the Lord has done for us and we thank God for them. It is usually an inexhaustible list of God’s goodness and mercy. We serve a God that is always Good, and so we see that in every plan and step we make in our lives, God is there doing good. We have more than enough reasons to be thankful for what God has done for us directly. One thing Apostle Paul is noted for is that he also thanks God for the good that is indirectly done to him, especially through the people God placed in his life.
So, on this Thanksgiving Sunday, let me just say, I thank God for you. I thank God for you for various reasons, but especially for making you an instrument of grace and blessings in my life. It is instructive that in Roman 1:8, Apostle Paul made it a priority to express gratitude to God on behalf of the Romans. This is a common theme whenever Paul writes to Churches or individuals. First, He thanks God for them. In Romans 1:8, He says, “First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is being reported all over the world.” In 1 Corinthians 1:4, he also thanked God for the Corinthians, “I always thank my God for you because of his grace given you in Christ Jesus. For in him you have been enriched in every way – with all kinds of speech and with all knowledge”. In Ephesians 1:15 he went a step further. Not only did he thank God for them, but he also said a prayer for them. “For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all God’s people, I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers.” We must have a habit of thanking God for each other. God placed people in our lives to be a blessing for us, and we must always appreciate God for that blessing. Thank God for your Church members and say a prayer for them if you have not already done so. May our prayers of faith be acceptable unto our God in Jesus’ Name.
So today, in step with the great Apostle Paul, I thank God through Jesus Christ for your faith and your resilience through the past couple of years. It had been two years we did not expect we will experience in our lifetime. We have always heard that there are pandemics, but let us just say that I, for one, was fully satisfied to keep it in the realms of conjecture and academic studies. However, it has been our reality for the past 24 months. It has taken courage, resilience and well-placed faith in God, and people of faith that God places in our lives, for us to still be standing and praising our God most high. I thank the God that gives this strength, and that brought people to our lives to keep us going.
As Apostle Paul said in his letter to the Philippians, “I thank my God upon every remembrance of you” – Philippians 1:3. Every day, I thank God for you in my life. I thank God for your fellowship of the gospel. I thank God for you because of how He has made you a light to the world. I thank God everyday for you, for making you a helper and a blessing; I thank God for making you a shoulder to lean on and to also cry on sometimes. I thank God for placing you here, side by side with the people of God, even in these crucial times, to jointly spread love, when the love of God is so much needed by the people of God in our world today. I believe that God gave us everything when he placed us here to be there for each other, supporting each other, praying for each other, and helping to carry each other’s burden.
Wonderful people of God, let us thank God for each other because He has brought us close to each as part of His divine plan. When we are down, we lift each other up, we pray for each other, we encourage each other but above all we keep motivating each other to stay on the straight and narrow path that leads to life everlasting. The Word of God says, “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” Your presence in my life has made it possible for me to keep this Word of God. So, I thank God for you, for making you a part of my life. May we continue to find pleasure in Him as we play our role in fulfilling His divine mission.
November 28, 2021 – Pastor Simbo Odunaiya