Giving thanks one week early


“Thirty Days of Thanksgiving” kicked off on Nov. 1, and I’ve been reading with interest people’s Facebook postings sharing what they are thankful for. What did we ever do before social media?

We are a blessed people. How often we complain about what we don’t have instead of giving thanks for what we do have! God never promised to supply all of our wants, but he did promise to supply all of our needs.

Philippians 4:19 reads, “And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”

You’ve probably seen various versions of this reminder that surfaces this time of year, but someone wrote, “If you have food in your fridge, clothes on your back, a roof over your head and a place to sleep, you are richer than 75 percent of the world.

“If you have money in the bank and in your wallet, you are among the top 8 percent of the world’s wealthy.

“If you woke up this morning with more health than illness, then you are blessed.

“If you can read this column, you are more fortunate than an estimated 353 million people who live with some sort of vision impairment, including 36 million blind people in the world” (Public Domain).

Though Thanksgiving Day prompts us to count our many blessings, the true test of a grateful life is giving thanks every day, not just with words, but with our attitude and our stewardship.

W. T. Purkiser said, “Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our Thanksgiving.

Since every good gift and every perfect gift comes from above (James 1:17), our blessings are really God’s resources He has entrusted to us to use for His glory. Do we manage them well? Are we willing to share our bounty with those less fortunate than we are?

W. Clement Stone said, “If you are really thankful, what do you do? You share.” Generous people who realize they can’t take it with them find ways to bless others.

My list of “thanks-givings” just scratches the surface. In no particular order, they include:

• Two new grandsons born this year, Conner and Nolan

• A family gathering in June to celebrate my Mom’s 90th birthday. Most of our family members made it, including the four Chancey boys

• Another very nice birthday bash given to Mom by Milledgeville friends, and all four brothers once again were able to make it

• My four children, their families and their various accomplishments

• My Houston daughter moving back to Atlanta and taking on a new adventure

• The outstanding year the Georgia Bulldogs are having

• The lousy year that Florida and Tennessee are having

• My lovely wife and 37 years of walking together

• Our church family full of wonderful people

• The privilege of preaching God’s Word

• The faithful readers who appreciate this column and Judy Kilgore, now retired church page editor, who let me know she “Got it” when I sent in new copy

• Banana pudding and Brunswick stew

• Oreos and York Peppermint Patties

• Good reports from the doctor

• The Astros winning the World Series (maybe there’s hope for the rebuilding Braves)

• The freedom to vote and to worship

• Chick-fil-a peppermint milkshakes

• The life-changing power of God’s Word

• Our military and local law enforcement officers, firefighters and first responders.

[Dr. David L. Chancey is pastor of McDonough Road Baptist Church, Fayetteville, Georgia. The church family gathers at 352 McDonough Road, near McCurry Park. Join them this Sunday for Bible study at 9:45 and worship at 10:55 a.m. Visit them online at and like them on Facebook.]