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“There is another reason why we always give thanks to God”.

1 Thess 2:13 GNB

Giving thanks to God is one of the most basic reactions to the awareness of God that human beings make. We know there is a God – and we are grateful to know that this universe isn’t just left to drift aimlessly along – there is a God guiding it, so we thank God there is a God! Someone said some time ago, “A baby is God’s opinion that life should go on”. We know this and we thank God that there is human life and that we ourselves have been born and we are alive – there are plenty of forces working against human life. We thank him for food, for harvests, for water, for the skills some have with cooking, and for the financial systems that make the distribution of food possible. We thank God for each other, for families, for human love, for growth and development.

But we give thanks on another level. Writing to the Thessalonians the three ministers thanked God that the message they had offered was “picked up” by the Thessalonians and received as if it was direct from God. We thank God for the gospel of Jesus Christ, the embodiment of God’s grace. And we go on to thank him for the new life in Christ which we derive from his gift to us of Jesus and his love, his salvation and his forgiveness. We thank him for the strength, purpose and hope which believing in Jesus has brought us – and which he renews in us day by day. We thank him for the fellowship of his church and the avenues of service which this great body provides for us.


Lord, make us always grateful.


Lord, kindle in all hearts a desire for peace. Help us all this Christmas to resolve to do, think and say thoughts that will lead to wholeness in the relationships between nations. Build up communities. Cause hatred and strife to cease. May goodwill abound. I ask it in Jesus’ name. AMEN

I.B.R.A. Readings
Isaiah 59:9–15a

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