This post is not a week late. Most of our readers in the United States celebrated Thanksgiving last week and are perhaps all turkey-ed out and ready to move on to another holiday season. Which makes now the perfect time to remember that the giving of thanks isn’t something a follower of Jesus can relegate to one time of year. Rather, a quick tour through the Bible will show us that giving thanks is part of the very fabric of what it means and looks like to be a Christian.
In a few weeks I’ll begin preaching on Ezekiel 34, God’s disputation against the false and selfish shepherds of Israel. He includes fiery accusations like these:
Should not shepherds feed the sheep?
You eat the fat, you clothe yourselves with wool…but you do not feed the sheep.
The weak you have not strengthened, the sick you have not healed…
So [my people] were scattered because there was no shepherd, and they became food for all the wild beasts. (from v. 2-6)
Frightening and sobering stuff. But for the time being, I’m in the middle of our annual elders’ planning retreat.