Five, that’s all, just five


My Thanksgiving Challenge is for you to invite yourself and others to list five things that you are thankful to God for. Give each person a small piece of paper and something to write with. Invite them to jot down five things that they are thankful to the Lord for providing to and for them.

Why five? In Bible Numerology, (yes there really is such a thing), the number five represents GRACE. Because of God’s grace, despite all that is happening within and all around us, we remain among the most blessed people on the face of the earth. Hard times and difficult challenges can make us quickly forget just how blessed we really are.

Thanksgiving is a time that has been set aside to acknowledge, with gratitude, the blessings, and provisions of God. My challenge to you is to simply list five of your blessings, share them with others, as you offer each of them back to the Lord, with gratitude. Grace is god’s unmerited favor, lavishly poured out upon all. Johnson Oatman, Jr., a minister in the Methodist Episcopal Church, wrote the song, Count Your Blessings. The refrain says:

Count your blessings, name them one by one; Count your blessings, see what God hath done; Count your blessings, name them one by one; Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.

As you prepare for the celebration of Thanksgiving Day, I encourage you to pause, before the feasting starts, and ask each person present to share at least five things they are thankful for. Helpful hint: (If you provide a piece of paper and a writing tool, this will only take about 30 seconds per person).

God loves to hear our words of thanksgiving and praise. Just remember that God can look past the words written on paper. God sees what is inscribed upon our hearts and upon our minds. Our attitudes of gratitude are always in order. Thanksgiving, for Christians, is not just a seasonal expression. The apostle Paul encourages us, in I Thessalonians 5:18, “… give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

Here are my top five things that I am grateful and thankful for:

5. Thankful for an Annual Conference filled with prayer warriors.

4. Thankful for laity and clergy that remain mission focused.

3. Thankful for our Conference Staff, Directors, and Superintendents, that make my role easier.

2. Thankful for God’s amazing generosity.

1. Thankful to return to the IGRC for two more years!


As you express thanksgiving and gratitude to God, in your own words, for God’s marvelous grace, please remember to thank God for our Annual Conference. We are blessed!

Happy Thanksgiving

Bishop Beard