You know that Sunday feeling, right?

We leave the church building inspired and filled with Truth and encouragement on Sundays … and somewhere along the course of the week, pieces of the message tend to fade and we often lose that Sunday feeling.

The Monday After {the Sunday Sermon} carries the Sunday message into Monday mornings by sharing how what we’ve heard on Sunday morning is making a difference in our Mondays, our weeks, our lives. Because of your generosity to Accelerate, we are able to share these stories! Thank you!

The Monday After Sunday, November 24, 2013: Thanksgiving Service

by Andrew Kelley

When I was a little boy, learning to say please and thank you was a lot harder than just playing with Legos or riding my bike around the farm.

I’m happy to share with you that I’ve got this whole “say thank you when someone gives you something good” thing down now at the age of

Here, I’ll share some of those with you:

I’m thankful to my dad and mom for raising me in a Christian home and doing their very best as they trusted in God.

I’m thankful for certain friends who were there for me when I was in my worst state and stayed until I could go the distance on my own again.

I’m thankful for my wife and all her adorning splendor; she’s such a gift from God, and she is my sunshine. I can’t truly express the love I feel from her other than its pretty close to the Love that Christ has shown me over and over. She loves me for me and all that left over stuff no other woman in the world would love.

And lastly, just like I save my favorite part of dinner for last, I’m thankful for the very best on my list — my God and my Savior, Who has held me so tight I wouldn’t run anymore and who caught me before I fell on the rocks of life time after time. He is the reason I live and am alive today. He is the reason I am here now.

So, yeah, I’ve got this thankful thing down.

Kinda.

I’m still kind of like that kid who would rather play Legos or ride my bike around the farm when it comes to saying thanks for for the trials in life. And now that I’ve gone through a few, I can tell you the learning curve isn’t so easy. As I’ve reflected, though, on the trials, I am so thankful for the people who God Himself has placed along my path to help guide me.

Apparently, I’m not the only. I heard a lot of those expressions of gratitude yesterday — people thankful for others who came along side them.

As we recall many of the thankful people that came up and shared things they had never shared in front of so many, I see my God’s paintbrush painting our family picture. So many said they were thankful for their small group or friends or family or pastor. I am a strong supporter of community within the body of Christ because I saw, as you did I’m sure, the bonds that are made and the love that is shared when people come together to support each other in hard times. In all of this and what was spoken during both services, I believe the Church is stronger and our trust in our Saviour has gone deeper.

A few people stood out from second service. They sparked some more meaning and a broader perspective for me. Children came up and thanked God for things that may have been more cute than meaningful for some and then some came forward to reveal things that they really had a hard time sharing; it moved some so deeply. They gave thanks for what mattered most to them individually, and it shows me to be thankful for all things at all times like we are instructed to do in 1 Thessalonians 5:18.

“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

I want to end with my favorite thanksgiving story, shared by Dave Anderson. Well, perhaps it’s more something he quoted from his dear wife, who shared it before she met her King face to face.

I am probably most thankful for this truth: “If I live, I win; and if I die, I win.”

I believe this was Sue Anderson’s “version” of Philippians 1:21

“For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.”

So, yeah, I’m learning to be thankful for it all. Because when we see it all from the bigger picture perspective, we know God is working all things together for our good and His glory.

Andrew and Dawn

Andrew Kelley is husband to Dawn and father to four wonderful children; he and his family currently call Immanuel and Zion home. 

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