Read: Nehemiah 12
Every November, New York City hosts the Thanksgiving Day Parade. Apparently, it’s the world’s largest parade.
In Nehemiah 12, there was a thanksgiving parade too. Two of them actually.
Nehemiah led one thanksgiving processional, and Ezra led the other. Only these parades didn’t happen in the streets. The walls around Jerusalem were about nine feet wide — wide enough for people to walk across. So the people marched around the city…atop the walls!
Nehemiah led his group to the left, and Ezra led his group to the right. They met up again at the temple. And the whole time they marched around the city, they gave thanks to God.
When was the last time I could be seen…walking and praising God?
I don’t mean in a parade. I just mean in everyday life. How well do I carry the banner of thanksgiving with me everywhere I go?
The more I read the Bible, the more I see the thread of thanksgiving throughout the whole of Scripture, and the more I want to be intentional about being a person of gratitude. Deep, abundant gratitude.
In a journal or notebook, write Nehemiah 12:43.
“On that day they offered great sacrifices and rejoiced because God had given them great joy. The women and children also celebrated, and Jerusalem’s rejoicing was heard far away.”
Or write any passage from today’s reading that stands out to you.
Thank you, Lord, that even after times of exile — even after seasons of defeat — you are faithful to bring your people back. You are the God who restores your children. Redemption is the song you sing. And because of you, we have reason to give thanks. Help me to become a person of deep gratitude. In everyday life. In ordinary situations. Teach me to give thanks. In your name I pray, amen.