25 Nov Luke 17:15-16 (Give Thanks!) by Pastor Don
Welcome God now with this LIFE Group Devotion (archive, Facebook).
“As they were going they were cleansed. And one of them, realizing he had been healed, returned, glorifying God in a loud voice; and he fell at the feet of Jesus and thanked him. He was a Samaritan.” Luke 17:15-16 (full readings)
Don’s Reflections: Today is Thanksgiving, my most favorite holiday, next to Easter. Thanksgiving is often overlooked in the rush of commercialization leading up to Christmas. On Thanksgiving, our family often shares with each other what we are most grateful for, which includes important responses like family, friends, God’s provision, etc. The Bible story today invites us to go even deeper. It reminds us to be thankful for the time that Jesus changed our lives. The story tells of 10 lepers who had a life-changing experience with Jesus, which compels me to remember the moment(s) when I encountered the incredible power of Jesus in my life. Those life-changing moments when I experienced the healing, strength, and peace God brought into my heart. What is significant about this story is that out of the 10 lepers who were healed, only one returned to say “thank you” to the Lord. On this Thanksgiving Day, I don’t want to be like the 9 lepers who went on their way without a simple gesture of gratitude. I want to stop and remember those times that Jesus took my broken spirit and restored it to new life! I want to share my deep gratitude for the life-changing encounters Christ has blessed me with…I don’t want to forget. I want to fall down at His feet on this day of thanksgiving, worship Him, and thank Him for seeing me as someone worthy enough to be touched and healed by His hand! I want this day to truly be a day of Giving Thanks! How about you?
* Pastor Don Bird is married to Mandy, and they have two children, Ethan and Haleigh. He is the Lead Pastor at First United Methodist Church in Canon City, CO.
Faith Challenge: In what ways can we help those who are marginalized and outcast in our lives and society (our modern-day lepers), have a life-changing experience with Jesus? Do our lives reflect our own gratitude for what Jesus has done for us?
Counter-Culture News: LSN, Vatican, AFA, Priests for Life, Live Action.
Our Prayers: Prayer to end abortion, Alpha Center, Peters family (JP). View, add, update Prayers on our new website. Let’s pray now.
Feast Day: St. Columban
Faith Quote: “Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.” ~ William Arthur Ward
Through Christ Our Lord,
2 Cor 9:15
* Pray/Fast: Prayer connects us with God’s will & His miracles, changing us & helping others. Fast from things that take your eyes off Jesus. Those who pray together stay together, and close to God!
* Save Unborn (& family): Abortion reality (images)…#1 death cause (23% pregnancies). Prov 24:11 & Jer 1:5. “A great poverty that a child must die that you might live as you wish.” Mother Teresa
* Evangelize:Make room for unbelievers & re-evangelization of self, by way of prayer (relationship) and following Christ’s example of love (service/sacrifice/mercy). Matt 28:19.