THANKSFULNESS TO GOD

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[Psalms:145:1-21]; [Habakkuk:3:17-19].

Lesson No.: 
151
Class: 
Elementary
Memory Verse: 

“Let  us  be  glad  and  rejoice” (Revelation 19:7).

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Notes: 

The First Thanksgiving
“Thank You for the world so sweet,
Thank You for the food we eat,
Thank You for the birds that sing --
Thank You, God, for everything.”
Perhaps it was a prayer something like this that the little boys and girls and their mothers and father prayed when they sat down to the first Thanksgiving dinner in America (Nigeria). These people had come a long way across the ocean to live in this country where they could worship God as they wanted to, and no one would hurt them. They sailed into a quiet harbour in wintertime. Perhaps it was cold and snow was on the ground, but they kneeled down on the shore and thanked God for bringing them save to land.

As soon as the winter was past, and the sun came out and warmed the earth, they planted little seeds. As the gentle spring rains watered the gardens, and the sun came out bright almost every day, green shoots started peeping up out of the ground. It wasn’t long until tall, sturdy cornstalks bowed and nodded in the summer breezes, and the fat ears of corn hung out their silk flags.

Each day the Pilgrims said “Thank You” to God for making the garden grow; but when the corn was picked and the fruits and other vegetables were put away for winter, they had a special dinner in honour of God who had given them a home and a church in America (Nigeria), and had provided their good food.

Our Thanksgiving
Every year now we have a special Thanksgiving Day to honour God for all He does for us. First of all we thank God for Jesus who helps us when we pray, and for the Bible that teaches us how to live as God wants us to live. We thank Him for giving us Mother and Daddy to love us and pray for us. We thank God for a clean, comfortable home, good food, and a place to play. We thank Him for sunshine and rain to make the beautiful flowers and the green grass grow, and for the birds that sing their sweet songs for us in the morning. God makes us happy with these good gifts. God loves us and wants to be glad and rejoice.

Something for God
How fine it would be if we would give something to God to make Him happy! What can we give Him? We can give Him our heart. Oh, that makes God happiest of all! We love God when we give Him our heart. We do not cry and pout when we cannot have our own way, but we thank Him for watching over us and caring for us so tenderly.

Thankful in Sad Times
We remember the good man Job. We know he made God happy. At one time Job was a very rich man. He must have lived on a big farm, because he had a great many cows, donkeys, sheep, and camels. He had a fine family of ten children. All of a sudden, one day Job was a very poor man. Robbers came and took away his cows, donkeys, and camels, and fire burned up his sheep. Even his children died when a big wind blew down the house where they were eating dinner. But Job did not murmur and complain. He knew God loved him and cared for him, and he worshiped God, or gave himself as a gift to God, just as he had when he was a rich man. Even when Job was very sick, he knew everything would turn out all right. He knew that God who had made his body in the first place had power to make it well again.

God was happy with Job. He made Job well again; gave him twice as many cows, donkeys, sheep, and camels as he had had before; and gave him another family -– seven sons and three beautiful daughters.

One time, years after Job had lived and died, the Prophet Habakkuk lived among his people, the Jews, in the land of Palestine. He knew that some heathen would come into the land and take the cows and donkeys and spoil the grapevines and the fruit trees. This would make the Jews very poor, and they would not have enough to eat. But Habakkuk said he would sing and be glad even though he and his people were very poor, because he knew God would remember them and make them rich and happy in their land again.

Thankful in Glad Times
We know God was happy with David. And do you know what David did? He said “Thank You” to God when he prayed. We know he did, because some of his prayers are written down in the Bible. One time God said He was going to do something very good for David, and David wanted to thank God. He want to the house of God, just as we do when we go to church. There David prayed and told God he knew He was a great God, and spoke about the many good things God had done for His people, and said he wanted God’s name to be honoured, or made great before all the people of the earth.

The Gift of Praises
One time Jesus and His disciples sailed across the Sea of Galilee to the country of the Gadarenes. Perhaps the people of that country had watched the ship as it came up close to their town. When Jesus stepped out of the ship and walked up on the shore, a poor sick man came running to meet Him. Somehow he knew that Jesus could help him, and he worshiped Him. he brought his heart to Jesus as well as his sick and troubled mind. Of course, Jesus healed him, just as he healed every sick person who came to Him.

This Gadarene man was so happy and thankful that he wanted to be with Jesus and go wherever He went. Jesus told him to go back to his home town and tell the people there what great things God had done for him. This man would be saying “Thank You” by telling others how good and kind and loving Jesus is. Then maybe some of them would become Jesus’ friends, too.

The Gift of Song
There is one gift that all God’s children can bring to Him, and that is a song. It makes God happy to hear the little children sing praises and thanks to Him in Sunday School and wherever they are all through the week.

Today we have read a song that David wrote to honour God and thank Him for His love and goodness. David had given his life to God, and there was a sweet peace in his heart as he talked with God and sang praises to Him.

One time a king of the Jews was very much troubled because a strong army was coming to fight against him and his people. He prayed and told God about his trouble and worry, and God told him to have certain of the people sing praises, or thanksgiving, to God as they all went out to meet the big army of soldiers.

Can we not imagine the Jews marching down the road, led by the singers, watching for a sight of the enemy? They know God is going to fight for them, but they do not know just how it will be done. Oh! There is the army -– but they are lying down -– are they asleep? No! No! They are all dead! God has caused them to fight among themselves, and they have killed one another. God knows how to do all things.

The next time we are troubled or worried about something, let’s try singing praises to God, and see the trouble disappear.

The Gift of a Gentle Heart
A way in which we may honour and praise God is by showing the gentle spirit of Jesus who lives in our heart. If we are sweet and peaceful when someone is unfair at play, or makes fun of us, or takes away our toys, then other people will know what a good, kind Friend Jesus is, and some of them will want to know Him, too.

Questions: 

1. To whom should we say “Thank You” for all the good things that come to us? [PS:145:3].2. Name two ways in which we may thank God for all His goodness to us. [PS:145:2], [PS:145:5].3. Name the two things in Psalm 145, verses 9 and 15, for which we should be thankful.4. What three things will God do for the children who fear Him, or honour and obey Him? [PS:145:19].5. Name two men who praised and worshiped God in times of trouble. [HAB:3:1]; [JOB:1:1].