THE PRAYER OF THANKSGIVING IN ADVANCE PROPELS US FORWARD. IT LEADS OUR THOUGHTS UP TO GOD, EVEN AS IT SHINES ITS BLESSING OUT TO THOSE AROUND US.

THANKSGIVING — IN ADVANCE

WHEN JESUS STOOD AT THE TOMB of his friend Lazarus, who had been dead for the better part of a week, the circumstances were anything but uplifting. The family was in despair. Jesus himself wept. The situation seemed hopeless. Yet what was about to happen there was all about glory and triumph and life. That dismal scene was on the verge of transformation into one of inestimable joy. And thanking God was to be the catalyst.

Standing at the tomb, Jesus began his prayer: "Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me. And I knew that thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou hast sent me" (John 11:41, 42). And in a short time, his prayer brought Lazarus back to life.

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November 21, 2005
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