Click above to listen to Thanksgiving with piano and English horn as you read. If you enjoy, listen to more music from Best Holiday Album Winner December Peace (ZMR Awards) and check out the 31 Days of December Peace devotional e-Book.
How can Thanksgiving lead to December Peace?
My good friend and mentor Ken Boa consistently encourages me to practice two disciplines: Gratitude and Remembrance. As we transition from our U.S. Thanksgiving holiday to the season of Advent, I was reminded of two verses that have transformed my life and faith journey. Here is how I believe these can prepare you and me for December Peace, and even can lead us there…
As you are listening to Thanksgiving, reflect on these words: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Recorded in Philippians 4, verses 6 and 7 point me toward giving thanks. They focus my heart and mind on gratitude. This prompts me to remember God’s blessings. Then I begin to think about particular times when God has been faithful to provide for me, to see me through a difficult time. For example, when our house was robbed, when there were emergency room visits to the hospital, when I was having fears and doubts about the future, etc. By practicing the thanksgiving in verse 6, this leads to the peace promised in verse 7, which will guard my heart and mind.
I composed the song Thanksgiving from these verses, because I am often tempted to be anxious about everything, not just anything. The music expresses child-like faith, and skipping through life with joy. I wrote the Advent and Christmas season devotional 31 Days of December Peace, to offer real life stories filled with hope and inspiration (from my life and the lives of special friends). Each leads to peace and rest, to gratitude and remembrance, to experiencing “December Peace.” Wishing you and your loved ones a holiday season filled with thanksgiving, peace and joy!
As you prepare for Thanksgiving, and for December, ask yourself these questions:
- Who are some people you are grateful for?
- What are some things you are grateful for?
- What difficult times has God helped you through?
- When did something amazing and good happen that encouraged you?