7 Thanksgiving Devotionals

By Jeff Bulthuis

October 4, 2018

Giving thanks to God is harder than we like to admit. Augustine wrote that sin makes each of us naturally “curved inward” or self-absorbed and viciously self-seeking. As a result, we tend to ignore God’s goodness and compassion.

But genuine thanksgiving to God is possible in Christ. This takes careful thought, disciplined prayer, and the work of the Holy Spirit. We would love to assist you in this. Below are seven devotionals to help you reflect on God’s deep and varied grace. Use them to guide you as you walk through this season of thanks.

1. "The Witness of Being Thankful" by Daryl DeKlerk

A rich list of thanks centered on God’s identity and work. This creates a natural invitation for personal testimonies.

2. "To Be Content" by Sergei Sosedkin

A devotion that speaks to thanksgiving in difficult or uncertain circumstances. You'll be reminded where your hopes should ultimately lie.

3. "Call and Response" by Reginald Smith

A reflection on our role as worshipers, particularly through music.Use this devotional to introduce hymns or songs of thanksgiving.

4. "Giving Thanks: Thanking God Forever" by James and Rose Dekker

A call to reflect on Psalm 136. You'll be invited to deeply meditate on and to share reasons for gratitude.

5. "Prayerful Joy" by Calvin Hoogendorn

A meditation on the connection between God’s sustaining joy and prayer. These words encourage us to rejoice in our unearned grace.

6. "Thanks" by Howard Vanderwell

A look at the basic foundation for Christian thanksgiving. We're reminded why we can give thanks in all circumstances (really).

7. "Promptings: Windfall" by Kenneth Koeman

A wonderful peek at the staggering scope of God’s promises. This is a good reminder to rejoice with gratitude during exceedingly good times.

We’d love to hear from you, so let us know if these devotions helped you prepare for Thanksgiving. We'd like also to offer a special gift from our sister program, Family Fire: a set of printable Thanksgiving Day cards for your holiday table. Each card contains a Bible verse and a question to ignite dinner conversation about thanksgiving with your family and guests this year. Download them right here.

As a Today staff, we pray that your celebrations are full of joy and thanks this year!

About the author — Jeff Bulthuis

Jeff has a B.A. in Psychology from Covenant College and an M.Div. from Calvin Theological Seminary. Jeff and his wife, Lisa, have five young children. They enjoy camping, spending time outdoors, and cheering on Chicago sports teams.

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