Thanks, Thanksgiving, Thankfulness, Giving Thanks

Steva Dooley

All different terms that mean to be grateful, to show gratitude, to let someone know that you appreciate them or something they have done for you, but I decided with the help of a Bible concordance to see what these different terms mean in the Bible. Just an exercise that I challenged myself to do in an effort to bring my heart and mind into a more grateful state of mind. I learned some really interesting things.
Many of the words are translated from the same Hebrew or Greek words, depending on whether they are in the Old Testament or the New Testament. The Hebrew or Greek word that “thanks” is translated from is used many times and usually translated the same way every time. Generally speaking, the word means “to show appreciation.” But then in one verse I found, the word thanks came from a different Hebrew word. That word meant “an act of worship.” So depending on whether one is giving thanks to another person, or to God, can change the whole concept from just showing appreciation to worshiping.
Another insight I found was one of the Greek words for thanks is also translated “grace many times.” So we give thanks, we give grace. Hence the act of “Saying Grace” at a meal. It goes a little farther than that though, in that the concept of that word means “giving grace.” In the Webster dictionary, grace can mean elegance, good will or to do honor. In the Bible it means to give mercy, to give what we do not deserve, to give goodness and blessings.
So to give thanks to someone can mean to give them goodness and blessings. Yes, I like that. We give thanks to God as an act or worship. We give thanks to others to show our appreciation for them or for what they did for us, and in the process we give them blessings. And the word “blessing” in the Oxford dictionary means “a favor or gift bestowed.” It can mean encouragement; it can mean a gift. Blessing nurtures hope. It wards off fear.
So as we look toward Thanksgiving, shake things up a bit. When thanking the people in your life, be sure to give them a blessing too.

Honey Ginger Glazed Carrots
1 pound carrots, peeled and sliced
¼ cup butter
2½ tablespoons honey
1 pinch ground ginger
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Small squirt prepared mustard (Optional)
Cook carrots until barely tender, about 5 minutes, drain. In a large skillet over low heat, melt butter with honey, stir in ground ginger and lemon juice and mustard if using. Stir in carrots and simmer until heated through and glazed. Serve hot.