Thanks for the Meal!

Sitting in a restaurant with some friends, we noticed a family with young children bowing their heads to “say the blessing.” We could not help but grin as the toddler looked around while the dad led them in prayer. She had her hands folded in a manner that looked like she was praying, but those big eyes were watching us. Hey, she was about two…she had other things on her mind.  But this dad was teaching her at this early age about being thankful.

Saying grace or the blessing before a meal is common in our society. Many of us practice this or have seen it. If you walk into a restaurant and see people with their heads bowed, you already know what they are doing.

“Saying the blessing”, “blessing the meal”, “saying grace”, or whatever you refer to it as, has been around a long time. In fact, in Mark 6, that is what Jesus was doing. He was offering thanks to God for providing the food.

Mark 6:41 “And when he had taken the five loaves and the two fishes, he (Jesus) looked up to heaven, and blessed, and brake the loaves …”

The Psalmist tells us, “It is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord …,” (Psalm 92:1)

Do any of us have a need in our lives? Do any of us have something we need God’s help with? I feel pretty confident in answering yes to both questions. Many times when I’ve talked with people, I’ve heard them ask, “What do I have to be thankful for?” And my heart breaks because I know they are having a rough time. I know they are hurting, and the needs they have are real and overwhelming. I know that without God stepping in, things will only get worse.

This might be describing you.  You might be saying right now, “She’s right, what do I have to be thankful for?” Well, I pray this week before you take a sip of coke, water, or coffee; before you take a bite of that Big Mac or peanut butter sandwich…you will just whisper a prayer of thanksgiving.  “Thank You Lord for the food you have given me today. There are things going on in my life that I need help with, but right now I just want to say thank you for what you have provided.”  Just offering thanks to God before a meal should remind us that God is the Great Provider. Who knows? By the end of the week, you may have a whole list of new things to thank God for!

Hebrews 13:15 “By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.”

Psalm 107:22 “And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare his works with rejoicing.PS: Being thankful has to start somewhere!

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