Friday, November 25, 2016

On Your Mark -- Get Set.......GO!

Shopping is in full force this morning -- well, actually, it was in full force at 5 pm yesterday. Seems "Black Friday" is no longer reserved for just Friday. In fact, I purchased an item several days ago that was advertised as a "Black Friday" sale. Clearly, the Thanksgiving holiday is done for another year. Yes, we'll be watching out for Christmas sales now. After all -- Christmas is only one month away.

But, as I posted earlier this week, Thanksgiving doesn't have to end when the Christmas season begins, Christmas is too big for just one day and Thanksgiving is too important to only be reserved for one day. Thank God that President Lincoln in 1863 signed a proclamation calling for "a day of thanksgiving and praise to our beneficient Father who dwells in the Heavens…..." We need our leaders to consistently remind us of being grateful. WE NEED to BE leaders that remind ourselves and others to be grateful. Gratitude is so good for us -- it makes us kinder, more patient and humble. And, I’ll take that one step farther, one day is just not enough to offer enough thanksgiving and praise to Almighty God for his goodness and mercy to us. Just think, if we carried over Thanksgiving right into the Christmas season and if we purposely live with an “attitude of gratitude”, maybe those frenzied shoppers wouldn't bug us when they almost run us over to get that "special".

God tells us to "enter His gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise" (Psalms 100:4). Gratitude is that gate and doorway to God’s joy and peace, and praise is the key to His presence. Being aware of His presence may just be the key to having one of the best Christmas seasons EVER. Instead of today being "Black Friday" to us.....we coud turn it into a "Good Friday", that becomes the doorway to that beautiful season of Advent which begins this Sunday -- that sacred, focused and deliberate time when we ponder the coming of our Lord from His heavenly throne to earth to become one of us. It really was a time of HEAVEN ON EARTH. Unlike the innkeeper who said, "No room in the inn", may we cross over from the hustle, bustle, stress and mess that can accompany this season and do our best to make room for Him.. And while we're at it, let's continue to make room for gratitude to God for His love that gave us the Reason for this Season -- the gift that keeps on giving -- our Heaven on Earth -- our Savior and our Lord! May this Black Friday.....become a Good Friday to YOU today!