Thursday, May 2 nd , 2024
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Pausing to Give Thanks Today and Every Day

David praised the LORD in the presence of the whole assembly, saying, “Praise be to you, LORD, the God of our father Israel, from everlasting to everlasting. Yours, LORD, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor, for everything in heaven and earth is yours. Yours, LORD, is the kingdom; you are exalted as head over all. Wealth and honor come from you; you are the ruler of all things. In your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all.  Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name. 1 Chronicles 29:10-13 NIV

Have you ever noticed how detailed and deep so many of the prayers are throughout the Old Testament? These prayers often provide us with history lessons of God’s goodness and faithfulness as well as teaching us to pray specifically and sincerely in the areas of praise, thanks, intercession, and supplication. Please take a moment to reread the verses above and praise God with the words that overflowed from King David’s heart thousands of years ago. God is the same yesterday, today, and forevermore; He is worthy of our praise!

There are prayers throughout Scripture that pour out thanks for victory in battles, protection, provision, miracles and more. These prayers take the daily moments, as well as the depths of despair and monumental triumphs of life, and lift them up to the Author of our days to praise Him for who He is, to thank Him for what He has done, and to ask for His will and wisdom to guide them so that God alone gets all the glory. Their prayers mark the history – HIS Story- of their lives. This is a great lesson that reflects the way Jesus responded to His disciples’ request, “Lord, teach us to pray,” but that is another lesson for another day. Suffice to say for today, take time to praise and thank God specifically, sincerely, and daily.

We prompted you in last week’s article to join us in praying and giving thanks for our Military throughout the month of November and beyond. Today, November 11th, is Veterans Day, a special day set aside for everyone to pause and give thanks for every person who has put on the United States military uniform to serve and preserve freedom. We also pray and give thanks for the family members who serve, sacrifice and especially for those who have suffered loss as their military family members paid the ultimate price for God and Country. 

Even in my own experiences as the daughter and then wife of two incredible military members, there are so many things that I do not know about their service. Their positions called them to go and do things we will never read about in books or see highlighted in the news. Movies and television series may hint or give a glimpse into something they did, but the details will never be shared with the world – but God knows. God knows every detail, every name, every mission, and every mobilization. God knows every voice that celebrated victory and He has collected every tear of the families who received a folded flag.

When my dad and husband served, they were not allowed to wear their uniform in public. They wore it to work and home, no stopping anywhere on the way, and so there were no “Thank you for your service” from strangers. Sadly, countless heroes in my dad’s generation were met with protests and hate after returning from war. We know that many are still traumatized today with PTSD; the mental, emotional, and physical scars of service. I say all of this not to bring feelings of guilt, but rather gratitude; to give you some insight into the history that has been written in what I call “invisible ink” because you and I will never read about it, but it has marked lives and nations across the centuries and around the world.

This service and sacrifice is worthy of more than a day or two of gratitude, more than a month of prayer; but every day, specific prayers for our men and women in uniform. From all of us at the National Day of Prayer Task Force, to all the visible and “invisible” heroes in uniform, both past and present, Thank You! We will never know all that you do, but we will always be grateful, and we will always be praying for you.

Would you please join me in prayer now?

Lord Jesus, thank You for the men and women You created to serve and sacrifice in the Military. You have established their hearts and minds to give their lives to protecting others and preserving freedom around the world in so many moments and missions that we will never even know about but You do. We pray Psalm 91 over them; that You will be their refuge, fortress, shield and rampart. We pray for their souls as well as their lives; may they say, “The LORD is my refuge,” and make the Most High their dwelling. We pray that no harm will overtake them, no disaster will come near their tent. We claim Your promise that You alone will command Your angels concerning them to guard them in war and in all Your ways. In Jesus precious name we always pray, Amen!

Serving Him with gladness,

Kathy Branzell