When We Thank God, a Seed Is Sown
June 4, 2017
This is the continuation of a series of Podcasts started in Episode #545.
From Romans One, we know the consequences of failing to thank God, but what of the seed we sow when we do? The seed of gratitude has a powerful bloom.
(Martha) Think about the Book of Acts, how they rejoiced when they were thrown in prison unjustly, rejoiced in what God could do because they were rejoicing. That’s first century basic tenet of their lives. It’s a central, essential base of responding to life and to God and to people. It’s a core issue that keeps the heavens open and keeps you from quenching the Spirit. Our friend prays for a heart of gratitude.
(Carole) It really is saying, “Yes and Amen! You, God are sovereign and everything is in Your hands.” Isn’t that what we’re doing when we thank Him? We are, for lack of a better word, confirming not only to ourselves, but to the three heavens, to the principalities and powers that God Is God, and He is in control.
(Martha) I assumed, because the Lord brought this to mind that I’m to mention it, but my oldest son’s first wife… We got the call that she had been in an automobile accident, was in critical condition. And we began to scramble and get ready to go, and the phone rang again. John was there. And they said she was gone. And I fell on the floor and said, “Thank You, God,” in great agony, and when I got there to my son, the first thing he said was, “I have to thank God.” That wasn’t particularly his faith at the time.
(John) So, you sowed seed. It was seed that you were sowing. And you’ve testified, and he’s testified how he was carried through that season with an incredible amount of grace. I know that, you know, you have to deal with, you know, everything. And later on, yes, but during the initial season of that…
(Martha) He was carried.
(John) He was carried.
(Martha) He said it many times. “I have to say thank You.” His way of putting it was, “Thank You that I had her seven years, not that I lost her, but I had her.” I think we can open the door for others, maybe our children.
(Jennifer) John, when you said, “You sowed the seed,” to Martha, that Martha’s thanksgiving and acknowledging God’s hand in it, acknowledging God is God in that, that that sowed a seed for that entire situation and for her son in it, it reminded me of Apollo 8 and Apollo 13, the moon missions. (laughing) To those who don’t know me, I’m kind of obsessed with two things: William Tecumseh Sherman and going to the moon. But the Apollo 8 mission was the first one to go completely around the moon, right? It happened on Christmas Eve. They went around the moon on Christmas Eve. And here they are in this situation when they’re doing the first thing – no other human has ever done this. We beat the Russians around the dark side of the moon. Nobody else has done what they’re doing. The whole world is interested in the fact that they’re doing it. You know, they lost contact with them. They came around… They were the first ones to see what they call earth rise, which is, you know, the earth, the sun moving over the earth, the light moving over the earth the way… And all those famous pictures we see now were taken from a pretty good ways off, right? But in that moment when they come back in contact with Houston, and they let them know everything’s ok, and then astronaut Frank Borman says we have a special message we’d like to tell you guys, the ones in the control center. And he reads the first chapter of Genesis in that place and time. And I saw a documentary, and they had the footage of mission control hearing that being read to them. And they had interviews with a couple of the surviving members, and they’re very old men now and at the time they were 25, 26 year old kids basically. And the one guy said, “I’m not ashamed to say I cried,” you know, and they were talking about it, and they said— One man said, “The hairs on the back of my neck just stood up,” because of where they were, when they were reading the Creation of all, you know? And so, there’s this moment when they could be talking about themselves, talking about how amazing it is, coming up with human wisdom. Who knows? I don’t know, you know. I’d be pretty tempted to stay on me if I’d just made it around the moon. I mean, I’d be like, “Hey, guys, remember this name. Jennifer Wentzel just came around the moon!” You know? And instead they acknowledged God as God on Christmas Eve. And they acknowledged His creation of what they were seeing, because they knew that in that moment they were seeing something that was nearly as profound as what He had done. From their standpoint, they were watching the earth be born in light for the first time in this sphere. Jim Lovell was one of the astronauts (on Apollo 8), and they all three decided to read that together. Jim Lovell was the Commander on Apollo 13. By every account, when you go back and look at that, those astronauts should not have made it. Those astronauts should have died. There were so many things that people came in with the great save and all and we look at it and say human ingenuity, but I’m sitting here and I’m listening to this, and I’m saying, “What kind of seed was sown on Apollo 8? When the first time they came around, they acknowledged God as God, and how much further did that go to spare the lives of the men of Apollo 13?” I don’t know. That was just something that came to my mind when you said that, John. And I have no idea how powerful that is. We know how powerful it is from Romans One for what the negatives are if you don’t do it, but maybe we have no idea the repercussions that go forward when we do, and how many people’s lives might be affected.
(John) And I didn’t think that through, and that’s amazing, because it’s real easy to see the swirl of the degradation and the annihilation of lives. But, of course, the reverse would be magnified and exponentially true. So, wow!
(Carole) They honored God as God, Jen.
(Martha) From the Creation. As it says, they saw the… From the Creation they honored God as God. Thanks, Jen. I want to watch it again.
(John) Well, they saw creation. Creation did speak that day to them and told them of the glory of God, and they acknowledged Him. They saw it and… Oh, that’s beautiful. Thank you. But I never, I mean I didn’t even think about it, because I didn’t make the connection between the two missions. (laughing…) Jennifer said because I’m not a big enough nerd. But really, it’s just cool. And what seeds am I going to be putting in my life to do this for this one person where I just thank God for them coming and being the blessing that they were?
(Carole) I’m just thinking, “Wouldn’t it be something if our gratitude to the Father, to the Son, to the Spirit was the very thing that began to break the chains off the ones who so assaulted, rejected?”
(John) It’s huge. It’s really huge.
(Martha) I think I mentioned this before at some point. But there was someone who wrongly accused me, and it was so painful to me, I could not get over it. I could not get over the pain, and I couldn’t forgive. And I prayed and prayed about it. And weeks went by, and I really wanted to forgive and so forth. And one day the Lord said, “I sent it. It was from Me.” And then I began to see what it had done in my life. That assault had solved something and killed something in my life. I don’t know. That it came from God made it acceptable. And then I began to understand the blessing that was intended by God. And in the end there was a truly magnificent reconciliation of love in the situation. So, you’re right.
(John) This is so totally challenging. This is so totally challenging and convicting and very convicting. But really… shewww!
(Martha) Well, He gave you the gift to give to us and to our listeners. Say the statement again.
(John) “So, I thank You for this person. It is impossible for me not to be blessed, because I am His. Everything He allows is my blessing. Again, it is impossible for me to be His and not be blessed. This person is my blessing because I am His. They brought something regardless of their motive to bless my life, and I thank God for it.”
(Martha) We will start calling you Joseph, because he said to his brothers, “You meant it for evil, but God meant it for good.” There’s the eternal statement. They did mean it for evil. Joseph didn’t soft-pedal it. They did mean it for evil, but God meant it for good. He overrode the whole situation and gave a complete victory. And we’ve seen that in situations. That’s what He will do. He will go right over it, transcend it and have His own agenda in the middle of it. So, thank you, John, for hearing the Lord.
(John) Thank You, Lord, for speaking.
When We Thank God, a Seed Is Sown – Episode #548 – Shulamite Podcast
From Romans One, we know the consequences of failing to thank God, but what of the seed we sow when we do thank Him? Our gratitude affects more than just our own lives, and often in ways we never dreamed possible. The seed of thanksgiving leads to a powerful harvest.