The story is told that upon his death Luther’s family was going through his personal effects. In Luther’s coat pocket, his family found two small coins and a piece of paper. Written on this crumpled page were the words “We are beggars!”
This cryptic message of his is supposedly Luther’s final words. Appropriate? Most assuredly so! As we observe yet another national Thanksgiving, enacted by President Lincoln 156 years ago, consider the words of David recorded in sacred Scripture; “I have been young and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging bread.” (Psalm 37:25)
What have you learned? Life experience is such a great teacher. A part of thanksgiving is to give back to the younger generation; teaching them that we are thankful in spite of what circumstances might dictate.
David learned the hard way. He had everything and proceeded to throw it all away because of greed. Through a series of calculated acts, he proceeded to destroy two families; the family of Uriah and his own as we are reminded that a sword would not leave his family.
Luther learned that we truly are beggars. We are sinners saved by grace – for by nature we are blind, dead, and enemies of God. Yet by God’s free grace and favor, we are restored, redeemed and forgiven.
Think back to this past year. Are we only thankful when things have gone “our way”? Yet what has Scripture and experience taught us? He cannot abandon us past the point of no hope/help. When things appear to be going against us, when all seems lost and so far beyond our grasp. God will provide our spiritual needs. “I have not seen the righteous forsaken!”
This has certainly been a challenging year. When we recall the year of our Lord 2019 – a year in which crops were seriously affected. Even those not affected by farming know the effects of rising prices, falling interest rates. A flat economy? Circumstances may cause some to say our situation is bleak yet David gives us a different picture – God’s children won’t beg for bread.
Jesus puts it more succinctly; “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow, reap, or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable then they?” [Mathew 6:25-27]
In just three little words Luther summed up our entire life – we are beggars – yet God has not given up on us nor will He ever abandon His own. He has promised to provide for us. Lord in Your mercy – hear our prayer: Heavenly Father, God of all grace, govern our hearts that we may never forget Your blessings but steadfastly thank and praise You for all Your goodness in this life until, with all Your saints, we praise You eternally in Your heavenly kingdom; through Jesus Christ, our Lord.