“The two greatest reasons for Thanks-giving.”

Ernest Hemingway told a beautiful story about a father and teenage son living in Spain. Their relationship turned sour and the son ran away from home. After a few years had passed the father began the long, but unsuccessful search for his lost and rebellious son, Paco, a very common name in Spain.

As a last resort he ran an ad in the Madrid newspaper that simply read, “Dear Paco, meet me in front of the newspaper office at noon tomorrow, all is forgiven I love you.” The next day at noon in front of the newspaper office there were 800 Paco’s all seeking forgiveness.

The first and greatest reason for Thanks-giving is that God in his infinite mercy has forgiven us and made us “sin-free” simply by trusting His word. “Oh, give thanks to the Lord for He is good! His mercy endures forever” Psalms 107:1.

Even Jonah while in the belly of the whale said, “I will sacrifice to You, with thanksgiving” Jonah 2:9. This resulted in his arrival on dry land after a three-day submarine ride. Nothing demonstrates a thankful heart more than offering the sacrifice of thanks-giving in the middle of a crisis.

The second greatest reason of Thanks-giving is our God given ability to forgive ourselves and others. Don’t pray the old Irish prayer, “May those who love us, love us; and those who don’t love us, may God turn their hearts; and if He doesn’t turn their hearts, may He turn their ankles, so we will know them by their limp.”

There is ample medical evidence to prove that bitterness, as a result of unforgiveness, can actually destroy your health. “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall be shown mercy” Matthew 5:7. Without forgiving yourself you will find it very difficult to forgive others.

The greatest examples to follow are those with a thankful heart and lifestyle. They don’t dwell on problems and constantly breed discouragement. Instead, they focus on solutions, build your confidence and become your biggest cheerleader!

Are those following your footsteps through life, or occasionally cross your pathway thankful for you, or are they asking God to turn your ankle?

Happy Thanks-giving Day!