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       Senior Pastor Phil Roland


              Pastor Ray Scott


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          George Washington as President set aside the last Thursday in November, 1789, as a day of Thanksgiving

"to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God."  

Few Presidents followed Washington’s example. Thanksgiving was celebrated, however, in a growing number of states, often on the last Thursday in November.

          It was not until 1863, in the midst of the Civil War, that the first of an unbroken series of annual national Thanksgiving proclamations was issued by President Abraham Lincoln.  Every year since Abraham Lincoln’s 1863 proclamation, the president then in office has issued a national Thanksgiving Proclamation.

          Philippians chapter four is the Thanksgiving chapter of the New Testament. Paul struggles himself with his own mental health issues in his epistles. In a sense this passage is written to Paul, by Paul and for Paul at the same time. With transparence Paul reveals to us some of his own struggles with both obsessive and depressive thinking. All preachers of the Gospel share Paul’s transparency when we preach and teach. It is out of one’s own life that the life of Jesus is allowed to flow.

          Ingratitude is also a struggle for all believers. We tend to take things for granted that have been freely given to us at great price. Saying “Thank You,” and “I appreciate you”  is especially needed for those who have poured out their lives for us. We need to express gratitude to both God and to those around us who mean so much.

          In today's sermon there are six foundations for having a thankful heart. Let's explore what Paul has written and I hope you find some new light on this familiar passage as you read it.

I’m grateful this season, aren’t you?


Pastor Phil  <><<



          Thanksgiving - November 18, 2018 - Sheepfold Ministries

 Pastor Phil Roland  <><<



Philippians 4:1-9

"The irony of our country is that we enjoy wealth beyond imagination, but are ungrateful for the REAL wealth we enjoy in an atmosphere of freedom. Even believers are too often unthankful and ungrateful. Our real wealth is our freedom to choose good or evil. Too many choose the later."                       Pastor Phil  <><<


“In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”    1 Thessalonians 5:18


“Giving thanks is not a matter of feeling thankful, it is a matter of obedience.”—Joni Erickson Tada (she is quadriplegic)

19 speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, 20 giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,    Ephesians 5:19-20




“Therefore, my brothers, you whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, that is how you should stand firm in the Lord, dear friends!”

            A. No “Chip on the Shoulder” withholding of love

                    1. Paul loved His church at Philippi unconditionally

                    2. Jesus has loved us unconditionally, can we do less?

          B. No conditional love, but wholehearted loving - John 13:34,35

              A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have

              loved you, that you also love one another.  “By this all will know that you

              are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”                                          

                    1. Agape - The kind of self-sacrificing love as Jesus

                    2. He went to the Cross for us, laying down His Life




“I plead with Euodia and I plead with Syntyche to agree with each other in the Lord.”

            A. Agree with your adversaries quickly – Matthew 5:20-26

          You have heard that it was said to those of old, 'You shall not murder, and

whoever murders will be in danger of the judgment.'  "But I say to you that

whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the

judgment. And whoever says to his brother, 'Raca!' shall be in danger of         the council. But whoever says, 'You fool!' shall be in danger of hell fire.     "Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your                        brother has something against you, "leave your gift there before the altar,                and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and


offer your gift. "Agree with your adversary quickly, while you are on the                        way with him, lest your adversary deliver you to the judge, the judge hand

you over to the officer, and you be thrown into prison. "Assuredly, I say to             you, you will by no means get out of there till you have paid the last


1. Harbored Hostility is a luxury we cannot afford

          2. Unresolved anger can easily lead to bitterness

B. If there is contention, let it be for the Gospel – v. 3a

Yes, and I ask you, loyal yokefellow, help these women who have                                   contended at my side in the cause of the gospel, along with Clement and                     the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the book of life.”

                    1. We are NOT to contend with one another - Friendly Fire

                    2. Jesus' clear teaching is that we agree quickly

                    3. BOTH parties in a conflict are to find agreement quickly

                              a. Cannot be One Way, that causes resentment

                              b. Cannot be One Up, that too promotes more conflict

                    4. We are to arrive at Win / Win settlements




3 And I urge you also, true companion, help these women who labored with me in the gospel, with Clement also, and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the Book of Life.

                    A. Early church had contention

                              1. All churches then and now have/will suffer contention

                              2. Caused by jealousy, envy and self-seeking

                                                            16 For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every

                                       evil thing are there.   James 3:16

                    B. Peacemakers are Invaluable

                              1. Barnabus in Book of Acts – “Son of Consolation”

2. Even Paul had his stubborn moments, Eg. John Mark

          C. Jesus extolled the Peacemakers – Matt. 5:9

             “Blessed are the peacemakers, For they shall be called sons of God.”

1. Conflict resolution members of the Body of Christ

                    2. Building bridges of Peace and Love to one anoher




“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!”

            A. Rejoice  in what God has done in your life – Luke 10:20

          However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your

names are written in heaven.

                        1. We are "Human Becomings," not just Human Beings

                    2. God's not finished with us yet; we're still under construction

B. Rejoice in God for Himself – Psalm 64:10



Let the righteous rejoice in the LORD and take refuge in him; let all the             upright in heart praise him!

                        1. He is our Protector, our Comforter,  our Provider

                    2. He Praise Him for the on-going benefits of His salvation




Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.

          A. Eighth Fruit of the Holy Spirit is Gentleness – Gal. 5:22-23

                    22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness,

               goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. . .

                    1. Gentleness (Proutase) is Violence under Control

                    2. The Holy Spirit has placed a bit in our mouth, + bridle

          B. The Holy Spirit’s Presence is marked by Peace and Gentleness

                    1. When Self-In-Christ control rules our hearts we are gentle

                    2. Jesus was a non-violent person - Eg. (Ghandi)


Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”

            A. Preface all Prayers with Thanksgiving

                    1. Remember you are requesting and not demanding

                    2. God has the last word: “Yes,” “No,” or, “Wait Awhile”

          B. Be Instant in Prayer and Instant in Thanksgiving





Philippians 4:1-9 (NKJV)
1 Therefore, my beloved and longed-for brethren, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, beloved.
2 I implore Euodia and I implore Syntyche to be of the same mind in the Lord.
3 And I urge you also, true companion, help these women who labored with me in the gospel, with Clement also, and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the Book of Life.
4 Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!
5 Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.
6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;
7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
8 Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy--meditate on these things.
9 The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.


Four Fiery Trials, Life Crashes I Thank God for

James 1:2-4
2 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials,
3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.
4 But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.

          A fiery plane crash killed my 34-year-old father. In April of 1956 my father left this life. I was 14 and the oldest of 5 children. My mother 2 years later, re-married and moved us from West Texas to Southern California. Six years later I met Lois, my life-partner and love of my Life. We married, conceived, birthed and raised 3 children there and later in NE Ohio.

          In 1961 I was on my way to an evening class at El Camino College when a left-turning driver turned into my path and hit me head on. I suffered my first whiplash and did damage to my mouth. It did slow me down a bit.

          Bitter or better, the choice is yours with what comes your way. I suffered another rear end crash by an intoxicated Latino driver in Spring of 1967. This happened a few months before Lisa's birth: Lois, Lisa and Barb in the back seat were unhurt. The crash totaled our car and I became a chronic pain sufferer. Afterward, I suffered from a Major Depressive Episode spinning off my second painful whiplash. In 1969 I sought the Lord and His will for my life. After a 22 month journey of deep introspection and reflection, I was called and commissioned by God to His Ministry to the broken-hearted.

The Word the Lord gave me about the pain was, "If you are to bring healing to the broken-hearted, you must be broken-hearted."

          I suffered a third rear end crash and whiplash in February of 1990. Again, my car is totaled and I am hospitalized with more pain. I decide it was time to leave my traditional church. Lois and I took part of the accident settlement and founded the Sheepfold in the Winter of 1991. Two other couples and some wonderful lifelong friends helped us with the enterprise.

Pastor Phil  <><<





Signs You Ate Too Much for Thanksgiving Dinner

The doctor tells you your weight would be perfect for a man 7'10" feet tall. (BMI - Body Mass Index)

You are responsible for a slight but measurable shift in the earth's axis.

Paramedics bring in the Jaws of Life to pry you out of the EZ-Boy.

The potatoes you used set off another famine in Ireland.

You receive a Sumo Wrestler application in your e-mail.

You set off 3 earthquake seismographs on your morning jog Friday.

Pricking your finger for cholesterol screening only yielded gravy.

You consider gluttony your patriotic duty.

Representatives from the Butterball Hall of Fame called twice



A little boy was asked to pray for dinner. Before he bowed his head to pray, he looked at the dish. Then, closing his eyes he prayed, “Lord, I don’t like the looks of it, but I’ll thank you and eat it anyway.”



A man had a habit of grumbling at the food his wife placed before him at family meals. Then he would ask the blessing. One day after his usual combination complaint-prayer, his little girl asked, “Daddy, does God hear us when we pray?”

“Why, of course,” he replied. “He hears us every time we pray.”

She paused on this a moment, and asked, “Does He hear everything we say the rest of the time?”

“Yes, dear, every word,” he replied, encouraged that he had inspired his daughter to be curious about spiritual matters. However, his pride was quickly turned to humility at his daughter’s next question.

“Then, which does God believe?”



Even though I clutch my blankets and groan when the alarm rings each morning, thank you, Lord, that I can hear. There are those who are deaf.

Even though I keep my eyes tightly closed against the morning light as long as possible, thank you, Lord, that I can see. There are many who are blind.

Even though I huddle in my bed and put off the physical effort of rising, thank you, Lord, that I have the strength to rise. There are many who are bedfast.

Even though the first hour of my day is hectic, when socks are lost, toast is burned, tempers are short, thank you, Lord, for my family. There are many who are lonely.

Even though our table never looks like the pictures in the magazines and the menu is at times unbalanced. Thank you, Lord, for the food we have. There are many who are hungry.

Even though the routine of my job is often monotonous, thank you, Lord, for the opportunity to work. There are many who have no work.

Thank you, Lord, for the gift of life.



One dear lady was not a cook, but the family decided that after many years, they should eat at home for Thanksgiving. She said, “I’ve cooked this turkey for the first time and I’m gonna bring it to the table. If it’s not good, don’t say a word. If it’s not good, there will be no negative comments, we’ll just go to a restaurant and have a meal.” So, she went to the kitchen to get the turkey, only to come into the dining room to see her husband and son at the table with hat and coat on.




Thank God For Dirty Dishes

Thank God for dirty dishes;
They have a tale to tell.
While others may go hungry,
We're eating very well
With home, health, and happiness,
I shouldn't want to fuss;
By the stack of evidence,
God's been very good to us.  Author: Mary Stuber

I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart;
I will recount all of your wonderful deeds.

Psalm 9:1    


  1. Psalm 50:23

The one who offers thanksgiving as his sacrifice glorifies me;
to one who orders his way rightly
I will show the salvation of God!”

Psalm 50:23    


Psalm 92:1

92:1 It is good to give thanks to the Lord,
to sing praises to your name, O Most High;

Psalm 92:1 


Psalm 97:12

Rejoice in the Lord, O you righteous,
and give thanks to his holy name!

Psalm 97:12    



Psalm 100:4

Enter his gates with thanksgiving,
and his courts with praise!
Give thanks to him; bless his name!

Psalm 100:4    


Psalm 105:1-2

105:1 Oh give thanks to the Lord; call upon his name;
make known his deeds among the peoples!
Sing to him, sing praises to him;
tell of all his wondrous works!

Psalm 105:1-2 


Philippians 4:6

do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Philippians 4:6    


Oh give thank to the Lord, call upon His name; Make known His deeds among the peoples. -Psalms 105:1

Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him; bless His name. -Psalms 100:4

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. -Philippians 4:6

It is good to give thanks to the Lord, and to sing praises to Thy name, O Most High; to declare Thy loving-kindness in the morning, and Thy faithfulness by night... For Thou, O Lord, hast made me glad by what Thou hast done, I will sing for joy at the work of Thy hands. How great are Thy works, O Lord! -Psalm 92:1, 4-5

Speak to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord; always giving thanks for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God, even the Father... -Ephesians 5:19-20

Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless His holy name. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget none of His benefits; Who pardons all your iniquities; Who heals all your diseases; who redeems your life from the pit; Who crowns you with loving-kindness and compassion; Who satisfies your years with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle. -Psalm 103:1-5