This Week’s Theme
Do Not Forget the Lord Your God
On the eve of the Israelites being brought into the land of Promise, Moses spoke to them of the inheritance they were about to receive. In deep contrast to their wilderness experience, they were going to be brought into a good land full of water brooks, fountains and springs, wheat and barley, vines and trees, pomegranates and olive trees and honey. This land would be rich in water, in agricultural produce, in fruits, and in minerals. God promised them that in the land he would provide, they would “eat and be full, and you shall bless the LORD your God for the good land he has given you” (Deut. 8.10).
In the light of all this coming abundance, the LORD warned them to take care lest they forget the LORD and fail to keep his commandments and rules. Moses warned them that after they had eaten and were full, living in good houses that they had built, with abundant crops and prosperous herds, with multiplied silver and gold, they would have a proud heart and forget the LORD. They would be tempted to forget that he led them out of Egypt, through the great wilderness, as well as all the ways of his provision: manna, water out of the rock, and protection through the years. Now free from their need to depend on God for the most basic things in order to survive, their wealth and prosperity could cripple all genuine seeking after God. His antidote: they were to remember the LORD their God who gave them the power to get wealth, and who confirmed his covenant promise to their fathers.
On this Thanksgiving Day, let us remember that it is the LORD that has blessed us, given us life and success, and that he leads us into his bounty, day by day. Our very survival, the most basic necessities of our lives, come from him, and we ought never allow our prosperity or abundance to overshadow our dependence and reliance on him. Let us this day praise him for his goodness, his salvation, his leading, and his grace. And let us pray that we might never substitute his blessings for him, forgetting that he alone is our strength and our song.
Preparing Our Hearts
Invocation: Our Prayer of Acclamation
O Almighty God and heavenly Father, we glorify thee that thou hast again fulfilled to us thy gracious promise, that while the earth remaineth, seed-time and harvest shall not fail. We bless thee for the kindly fruits of the earth which thou hast given to our use. Teach us, we beseech thee, to remember that it is not by bread alone that man doth live; and grant us evermore to feed on him who is the true bread from heaven, Jesus Christ our Lord; to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be all honour and glory world without end. Amen.
~ Irish Prayer Book (Suter, #163, p. 75)
Call to Worship
Blessed are you, O God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. And blessed is your Kingdom, both now and forever, amen.
Praising Our God
Te Deum Laudamus
You are God: we praise you; you are the Lord; we acclaim you; you are the eternal Father: All creation worships you. To you all angels, all the powers of heaven, Cherubim and Seraphim, sing in endless praise: Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might, heaven and earth are full of your glory.
The glorious company of apostles praise you. The noble fellowship of prophets praise you. The white-robed army of martyrs praise you. Throughout the world the holy Church acclaims you; Father, of majesty unbounded, your true and only Son, worthy of all worship, and the Holy Spirit, advocate and guide.
You, Christ, are the king of glory, the eternal Son of the Father. When you became man to set us free you did not shun the Virgin’s womb. You overcame the sting of death and opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers. You are seated at God’s right hand in glory. We believe that you will come and be our judge. Come then, Lord, and help your people, bought with the price of your own blood, and bring us with your saints to glory everlasting.
Praise and Thanksgiving (songs and prayers)
Glory be to the Father,
And to the Son and to the Holy Spirit:
As it was in the beginning,
Is now, and ever shall be,
World without end. Amen, amen.
Listening to His Voice
Chronological Reading for the Day
Thursday: Rev. 11-14
Reflection: Silence and/or Journaling
Responding in Faith
The Apostles’ Creed
I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried; he descended into hell; the third day he arose again from the dead; he ascended into heaven and sits on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic* church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.
*In the Apostles’ and Nicene Creeds, the term catholic refers to the Church’s universality, through all ages and times, of all languages and peoples. It refers to no particular tradition or denominational expression (e.g., as in Roman Catholic).
Prayers of Confession
Let us now confess our sins to God and receive mercy and grace to help in our time of need.
Assurance of Pardon
Having faithfully confessed and renounced your sin, Christ also has been faithful to forgive your sins and to purify you from all unrighteousness. It is certain, that there is One who has spoken to the Father in your defense, Jesus Christ, the Righteous One who is the atoning sacrifice for our sins and for the sins of the whole world. His grace and peace are with you now. Amen.
Petitions and Supplications, Ending with The Lord’s Prayer
Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
~ Matthew 6.9-13 (KJV)
Doxology (and/or closing song)
Praise God from whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him all creatures here below;
Praise Him above ye heavenly host;
Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Amen.
Departing to Serve
O God, who art the unsearchable abyss of peace, the ineffable sea of love, the fountain of blessings, and bestower of affection, who sendest peace to those who receive it; open up to us this day the sea of thy love, and water us with plenteous streams from the riches of thy grace. Make us children of quietness, and heirs of peace. Enkindle in us the fire of thy love; strengthen our weakness by thy power; bind us. closely to thee and each other in one firm and indissoluble bond.
~ Syrian Clementine Liturgy (Oden, p. 267)
Affirmation for the Day
Let them thank the LORD for his steadfast love, for his wondrous works to the children of man! And let them offer sacrifices of thanksgiving, and tell of his deeds in songs of joy! (Ps. 107.21-22).
Pray without Ceasing – Flash Prayer for the Day
On this Thanksgiving holiday, we give you thanks, Jesus, our Savior and Lord, for your provision, blessing, and guidance in our lives day by day.
For Your Weekly Journey
Let God Arise! Seasonal Focus
The Sovereignty of God, Romans 11.33-36
Tozer, The Knowledge of the Holy