I have always looked forward to this time of the year. I know some people look forward to the “official” New Year, but for me, this time of the year brings the same kind of excitement and expectancy for change and transformation. Even though the weather feels nothing like fall yet here in South Carolina, I’m preparing myself for all the “feels” that the fall season brings. The cool crispness of the autumn air, the vibrancy of fall foliage, fire nights, jeans, and of course Chili! With the turn of the season, my mind also shifts with anticipation to Thanksgiving. There is something transformative about this season of gratitude and thanksgiving that warms my heart in a new way. Each year, my spirit yearns for different ways to make Thanksgiving more meaningful for my family and those that we love. That is my Thanksgiving prayer for our families!
The Hustle of the Holidays
During this time of the year, everything around us seems to kick into overdrive! The pressures to be more, do more and get more, begins to settle down into our hearts and swarm around our brains like an army of angry bees. If we don’t protect our souls with intentionality and vigilance, we will get swept up and carried away by the commercialization of the holidays and the pervasive distractions that linger all around us. We will lose focus on the meaning behind the season.
As the seasons begins to slowly change, so does the prayer of my heart.
Infuse Our Hearts With Thanksgiving Prayer
Heavenly Father, I pray that this Thanksgiving, you will slow us down. Unrush our hearts and quiet our busy minds. Keep our eyes fixed on you and our hearts connected in tandem to yours. Help us truly focus on being fully present with ourselves and those that we love. Lord, give us eyes to see the many blessings you have given us. Help us embrace each one and give thanks for the gift. Open our hands to be your available servants. Use them willingly for your Kingdom work.
As we begin to see our many blessings, I pray that you will create a desire in our hearts to be a blessing to others. Help us be obedient to your callings. Lead us to those who need to know you, who need to see what the hands and feet of Jesus look like in their lives. Overwhelm our hearts with joy and thanksgiving. Use the overflow to touch the hearts of those around us. Father, we have so much in our lives; more than we need and way more than we deserve. Yet, we live each day with an attitude of scarcity where there is obvious abundance. Help our hearts adopt a mentality of abundancy. Prepare our spirits to reach those in desperate need for your Kingdom during this season.
Father God, help us to resist the temptations to see Thanksgiving as the world sees it; as a time to be served, gluttonous, lazy and entitled. Wake us up to needs of the people around us; beginning in our homes and outside our walls. Soften our hearts. Make us sensitive and responsive to the cries of the poor and needy. Wake our souls up from their complacent slumber. Help us remain alert and vigilant to the opportunities you have prepared for us in advance of this season. Equip us with your unconditional grace and mercy.
As we reflect on our lives this past year, flood our hearts with reminders of your great faithfulness. Overwhelm our spirits with vivid reminders of the sacrifice your son Jesus made for us on the cross. In the precious words of Jesus in John 10:10, “My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life” (NLT). May we make that the anthem of our hearts this Thanksgiving season and share the abundant life found in Jesus Christ with all whom we come in contact with through our thoughts, words and actions.
In Jesus’s Precious and Holy Name,