A Thankful Prayer!
We have so much to be thankful to God for! The very air that we breath and every heartbeat! We are all just here on a string because life is so fragile. Do we really appreciate all that we have? Do we realize that every day, every hour, every minute and every second is a blessing from God? God is in control of everything and he is eternal! How easy it is to take everything we have for granted. We sometimes live like we are going to live forever in this world. In reality our lives are like a vapor that is here and gone so quickly. Do we ever thank God for the sun to warm us? How about the rain he provides to help our crops grow? We take so much for granted because we assume they will always be there. Instead of praising God daily for things that we have we tend to dwell on things that we don’t have. We have lists we read to God about our desires and things we think will make our lives better. It’s easy to seek the gift instead of the giver.
In Luke chapter 17 starting with verse 11 Jesus is entering a certain village when ten leprous men who stood at a distance met him. And they raised their voice and said “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us.” And when he saw them he told them “to go show themselves to the priests.” “And it came about that as they were going they were cleansed. Now one of them seeing that he was cleansed turned back, glorifying God in a loud voice, and fell down on his face at His feet, giving thanks to him. This man was a Samaritan. And Jesus answered and said “were not there ten who were healed? But the other nine where are they? But the one who gives thanks is this foreigner?” It is noteworthy that Jesus commended the foreign man on being thankful. It is also noteworthy that the other nine did not turn back to give thanks. Only one that day appreciated not only the gift but more importantly the giver! Unfortunately that is exactly how it is in our world today. Too many times we request something from God and when he delivers it we are off to the next request. I want to be like the thankful man who showed his true heart in being thankful for what God did for him! How about you? Are you seeking the blessing or the one who provides blessings to you every day?
I’m reminded of a story I shared in another post. It is such a good example and it moved me so much I’d like to share it again. My former pastor had a daughter. She was his only child and naturally he loved her dearly. This daughter would call him often as she was in Georgia while he was serving in Michigan. “Daddy”, she would say, “Thank you for raising me like you did, I am so thankful for all that you and mom did for me.” “I am so thankful that both of you showed me how to live and love God not only by your words but by your actions. I am so thankful that I was your daughter and that you raised me so well!” When he got off of the phone he would invariably turn to his wife and ask “Is there anything that they need?” I’m here to tell you that your Heavenly Father is the same way but even more so! He loves us so much and he appreciates it when we are thankful!
It’s easy to say that we are thankful, but how do we put it into actions and into our prayer life? Since God has given us so much, how do we always thank him? I think that it starts with our attitudes. Are we really thankful? If we are why do we keep badgering him with prayer requests? I realize that we do have the right as God’s children to make requests. However, we need to realize that God knows our needs even before we ask. We also need to realize that whatever situation we are in has been approved by God. Satan cannot do anything to us without God’s consent!
One day Jesus’ disciples requested that he teach them to pray. In Matthew chapter 6 verses 9-13 he taught them this prayer.
Years ago someone shared a different prayer that made me think about this being thankful theme. It is important in praying to pray from your heart. Words are just words unless they come from your heart. This is not a script but rather an attitude in our prayers! When we come into prayer with the thankful attitude and it is coming from our heart God is always pleased! Consider this guideline using your own words and from a thankful perspective to thank God for everything!
Our Father….Dear God I’m so thankful that you are my Heavenly Father! I thank you that as my Heavenly Father that you love me! I’m thankful that you watch out for me! I’m thankful that you only want what is best for me!
Who art in Heaven….Dear God, I am thankful that there is a heaven and that you are there! I am thankful that a place has been prepared for me and that someday I can live there too! I am thankful that you look down on me from heaven and that our loved ones who have gone before us are not lost, but in Heaven with you!
Hallowed be thy name….Dear God…I am so thankful that your name is above all names in heaven and earth! I am so thankful that as the song goes “In the name of Jesus we have the victory!” I am thankful that as it states in Philippians 2: 9-11 that God has exalted Jesus name above all names and that at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow of those in heaven, on earth, and under the earth.
Thy kingdom come…Dear God…I am so thankful that you have a kingdom that is far greater than these earthly kingdoms and that some day your kingdom will rule! I am so thankful that you are all powerful and that you love me and that I am part of your kingdom!
Thy will be done…Dear God, I am so thankful that whatever is happening in my life is your will for me. I am thankful that whatever is happening is occurring to make me better! I am thankful that whatever is going on in this world is your will and that ultimately we are being purified with fire so that we can be with you!
On Earth as it is in Heaven…Dear God, I am thankful for this earthly home you have given us! I am thankful that you created the earth and all of the planets. I am thankful that this earth sustains us by your mercy and that you have given us all that we need to live! I am glad for your will not only here but in heaven and I trust you that everything works for my good!
Give us this day our daily bread…Dear God, I am so thankful that you sustain us. Not only do you give us nourishment for our physical bodies but also spiritual nourishment to keep our Spirits growing in you! Thank you for meeting all of our needs and for knowing what we need even before we ask! Thank you for your blessings in this life and the life to come!
And forgive us our debts…..Dear God, Thank you for forgiving my sins! I have sinned greatly against you and only by your forgiveness am I worthy to be in your presence! I am so unworthy of your love and yet you loved me even before I was born! You gave me the opportunity to accept you into my life and I am thankful. I am thankful that you forgave a wretch like me!
As we forgive our debtors…Dear God, Thank you for forgiveness and let me be a forgiver too! Help me to forgive just as you forgave. You have forgiven me for so much Lord and in my earthly mind I cannot forgive. Thank you for giving me a heavenly heart where I can also forgive others like you forgave me!
And lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil…Dear God, Thank you for your watchful eye on all of us. Thank you for guiding our path and protecting us like a father protecting his young. Thank you for delivering us from the evil one who wants to kill and destroy us. Thank you for your loving hand of protection shielding us from danger!
For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever…Dear God, I thank you that you are the beginning and the end, the alpha and omega! You are everlasting and are always near! I thank you Lord that this earthly life is only temporary, but your kingdom is eternal for ever and ever!
Dear God…I thank you for this thankful prayer that you let me share with my readers! I pray that you will bless these words in their hearts and that they will learn to be thankful in all things! I pray that we will take a new thankful attitude in our prayer life! I’m thankful that you know what is best for us and that you are preparing us for heaven while we are on this earth!
In Jesus name