I’m not pastor Bob, but since he has allowed me the ability, even though he may not realize it, to blog here, I thought I’d share a few of my thoughts related to the season.
Years ago Flo started a tradition in a previous church called Thanksliving Letters. Early in November appropriate stationery was placed in the foyer of the church, and people were encouraged to take as much as they would use. The purpose was to write a note to someone that you wanted to thank for some kindness shown to you, or a Godly example they had demonstrated that encouraged you. It didn’t have to be someone in the church but often it was. As a recipient of some of these letters, I can testify that they are encouraging and uplifting. Too often we let kindnesses slip by without letting others know how appreciative we are.
Many times in scripture we are told to offer our thanks to God, not just for what He has done, as important as that is, but for who He is as well. Too often we are thankful just for benefits we receive and neglect being thankful for how God is working in us to conform us to His will or how we see God being manifested in others. All we need to do is look at 2 Thessalonians 1:3-4 (ESV) to see what Paul was thankful for.
 We ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers, as is right, because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of every one of you for one another is increasing.  Therefore we ourselves boast about you in the churches of God for your steadfastness and faith in all your persecutions and in the afflictions that you are enduring.
Paul wrote this to the Thessalonians while they were enduring hardship to give them encouragement to persevere and continue growing in the faith. I think this is an aspect of thanksgiving we frequently neglect.
Has someone’s life in Christ encouraged you? Would you take the time to share how their Christian life has helped you through your struggles?