As thankful people we approach this table. As invited people we come to share in the feast that is prepared for us but does not belong to us. We come as Christ’s own at his invitation, for this table is not for the worthy but for the hungry.
Let us pray.
Gracious God, we give you thanks for all your blessings,
but even in this season of thankfulness we struggle to be thankful people
We are thankful that the angel of death passed over our ancestors in Egypt,
but we quickly forget your blessings when we become fearful in our own desert.
We are thankful for clean water to drink and healthy food to eat,
but we forget that you will provide and we demand more than manna.
We are grateful for strong leaders like Moses and the judges,
but we forget to follow them and wander our own ways.
We are thankful for the voices of the prophets, then and now, calling us to be better, to repent, to pray, and to follow your commands –
but we wonder in our thankfulness, do they have to be SOO persistent?
We are thankful for Jesus. Who wouldn’t be thankful for a cute little baby savior?
But we forget that we don’t get to create him in our image.
We are grateful for the teachings of Jesus.
Except for the ones that are confusing, frustrating, or hard to follow.
We are thankful for the night that Jesus shared a meal with his friends and how he took the bread, blessed, and broke it and gave it to them telling them to “take and eat and do this in remembrance of me.”
And we are thankful that Jesus took a cup and poured wine into it saying, “this is the cup of my covenant, poured out in my blood for the forgiveness of sins. Whenever you drink of it, remember me.”
Yes, we are thankful. But did he really have to die?
It is hard to be thankful for death.
But we are grateful that death is not the end. With the women we stare open-mouthed at the empty tomb.
With confused understanding we are grateful for resurrection.
Lord, send your Spirit to lift us above our lukewarm thankfulness. Turn our desire to be grateful into true gratitude. Take these simple gifts of bread and wine and use them to transform us. Mold us into people who are truly thankful for your blessings as we participate in your very body and blood.
With Christ, in Christ, through Christ, in communion with the Creator and the Spirit we are thankful. Amen.
Submitted by Rev. Nikki Cooley, First Presbyterian Church, Liberty, MO
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