November 23, 2023

The A-Z Guide to Thanksgiving

Pastor Philip De Courcy

Psalm 118:1

Donald Grey Barnhouse tells the story of the Countess of Huntington, who while on her way to a party, ordered her coachman to stop near a street preacher so that she might listen to what he had to say. In God’s kind providence, it was the means of bringing her to Christ. In an instant, her life was changed so that she loved the things she once hated and hated the things she once loved. She proved to be a new creature in Christ and a patron of the gospel, financing the ministries of John Wesley and George Whitefield. At one time later in her life, a preacher called her attention to the fact that she was among the select few mentioned in the Bible where God tells us that “not many noble are called . . .” (1 Cor. 1:26). He remarked that the text did not say “not any” are called, but “not many.” It is told that at that moment, Lady Huntington covered her face with her hands and then enthusiastically exclaimed, “O how many times I have thanked God for the letter M.” It was that which let her know that salvation was for her as soon as she took her place among all other sinners.

Lady Huntington thanked God for the letter M. But as I have reflected on that story, it got me thinking about a whole alphabet of letters and the truths they communicate, for which I am deeply grateful.

I am thankful for the letter A, which speaks of adoption (Romans 8:15-16). I am thankful for the letter B, which speaks of blessing (Eph. 1:3). Thankful for the letter C, which speaks of calling (Eph. 4:1). Thankful for the letter D, which speaks of deliverance (Col. 1:12-13). Thankful for the letter E, which speaks of election (1 Thess. 1:4). Thankful for the letter F, which speaks of faithfulness (Lam 3:22-24). Thankful for the letter G, which speaks of grace (John 1:16). Thankful for the letter H, which speaks of hope (1 Peter 1:3). Thankful for the letter I, which speaks of inspiration (2 Tim. 3:16-17). Thankful for the letter J, which speaks of Jesus (Matt. 1:21). Thankful for the letter K, which speaks of knowledge (Prov. 1:7). Thankful for the letter L, which speaks of love (Rom. 8:38-39). Thankful for the letter M, which speaks of mercy (Psalm 23:6). Thankful for the letter N, which speaks of newness (Romans 6:4). Thankful for the letter O which speaks of overcoming (1 John 5:4). Thankful for the letter P which speaks of prophecy (Rev. 1:3). Thankful for the letter Q which speaks of quietness (Prov. 17:1). Thankful for the letter R which speaks of reward (Rev. 22:12). Thankful for the letter S which speaks of supply (Phil. 4:19). Thankful for the letter T which speaks of trials (James 1:2-4). Thankful for the letter U, which speaks of unity (Psalm 133:1). Thankful for the letter V, which speaks of victory (1 Cor. 15:54-57). Thankful for the letter W, which speaks of wife (Prov. 18:22).  Thankful for the letter X, not sure why, but we are to give thanks in everything (1 Thess. 5:18). Thankful for the letter Y, which speaks of yes (2 Cor. 1:20). Thankful for the letter Z which speaks of zeal (Isa. 9:7).

Just as the letters of the alphabet allow us to write, communicate, and express ourselves, may these 26 letters and their attached truths allow us to write a new chapter of thanksgiving to God. Let your gratitude be an A-Z thing, not an ABC thing.