Written by Fr. Dale Minor - Reclaim Ministry - Rutland, OH
“Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise! Give thanks to Him, bless His name!” (Ps. 100:4)
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your mind in Christ Jesus.” (Phil. 4:6-7)
Lord Jesus, I give You thanks this day for long life and your constant presence with me, especially Lord, during those years when I generally ignored you and went my own way. I especially thank You for your steadfast love and Your faithfulness in calling me back to the realization that without You, I am nothing.
I thank You for the family by which I have been surrounded and in which I was raised, for the base values they crafted in me and for encouraging me to appreciate, not only the depth of your creation, but a thirst for knowledge and an appreciation of humble beginnings. I thank you for my life, having reached the age of 80, an age I never expected to reach, and am now enjoying in relatively good health. Thank you, Lord.
I thank you, Lord, for opportunities which, in my younger years, I would never have imagined, opportunities allowing me to work in fields otherwise foreign to me and which placed me in positions perceivably unattainable. I thank you, Lord, for the worlds I have seen, as I have been privileged to travel in at least 45 of the 50 American states and visited 6 countries on 3 continents. And I thank you for all the friends and acquaintances I have gained in these journeys.
I thank you, Lord, for those opportunities which opened unexpectedly, actions I took almost on a whim, and which only later I realized was divine guidance; of prime importance is the event which took me to Cincinnati where I met the girl who would become my wife, and for the 59 years of marriage we enjoyed before you allowed her to come into your perfect presence. I thank you for the family we raised and how they have been and continue to be the source of my greatest joy and blessings.
I thank you also for the failures of my life, for the growth I received from them. There was that decision I made when I was just 26 years old, one I admit I made without consulting You; the decision to enter into a business partnership which I believed would assure a comfortable future, but which then fell apart within 3 years. Such failure was really tough to take at the time, but I have drawn from that experience for the remainder of my life.
I thank you, Lord, for the call you made on my life, a call which by worldy measure didn’t make sense, in that, at age 52 I was called to give up a solid position in industry to enter into seminary and begin a new life as an ordained minister in Your church and, while this meant giving up some worldly comforts, you replaced these with the blessing of a life of service to you and of being a servant to those you place before me.
I thank you, Lord, for showing me how all the various events of my life which seemed to come together simply by chance, weren’t coincidences at all, but were “God-incidents,” they were ordained by you. For these, I am most assuredly grateful.
To the reader, I leave you with these opening lyrics from the song Give Thanks by Don Moen, praying they may help you sing praises from your own grateful heart.
“Give thanks with a grateful heart, give thanks to the Holy One, give thanks because He's given Jesus Christ, His Son.” Amen!
View and listen here: https://youtu.be/blbslHDgceY
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