Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good. His Love endures forever. There's real reason to be thankful when we understand just how much God loves us.

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good

By Scott Hilgendorff / Cowboys of the Cross

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good.
His love endures forever.’ Psalm 136:1

God’s love endures through all things and each of all 26 verses of this Psalm end with the words, “His love endures forever.” Each verse offers a reason the Psalmist is thankful, many of the reasons relating to all the lengths God went to in rescuing the Israelites from Egypt and taking them to the Promised Land. He also thanks God for everything He created.

Much like when families and friends go around the table describing what they are thankful for at Thanksgiving dinner or what gets shared in prayer before the meal, the Psalmist gives thanks for everything God has provided.

But in the Psalm, he reminds us of just how big God’s love for us is. It’s endless and will never stop. Never.

The Thanksgiving season is here and gives us an occasion to pay special attention to what God has provided for us but just as His love for us is always present, our thanks is always present when we realize what God did for us out of His love–sent Jesus to die on the cross for our sins. Out of that sacrifice comes a chance to repent of our sin and confess Jesus as Lord and Savior so that we can be forgiven our sins and made right before God. Without that forgiveness, that God freely offers those who ask for it, we face God’s judgement and punishment of our sin. His love is unending, but what God won’t tolerate is sin. It has to be judged, but in what is more than fair, God loves us enough that He sent Jesus to take the punishment for our sin. Through the realization of what he did for us and the salvation we can freely receive from that act of love simply through believing, repenting and asking to be saved, we become naturally thankful to God.

1Thessalonians 5:18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

Paul reminds us in his letter to the Thessalonians that we need to give thanks for everything. Knowing that God’s plan is perfect, that even means finding a way to be thankful for what we don’t think is fair or good or right the way we measure it. It means being thankful for all that He has given us that we love and take joy in, but also realizing that if everything works out to the goodness God intends, our own struggles can be part of that and we can be thankful for those as well. A bad wreck coming around the third barrel, a roping horse coming up lame before the finals or a broken femur bucking off a bull can feel like huge setbacks, but what we can’t see in what God is doing through those setbacks can turn out to be some of the biggest blessings, especially when He uses them to change us and draw us closer to Him.

God’s love for us is unending. Our reasons to be thankful can be too.

Cowboys of the Cross

Welcome to Cowboys of the Cross: your resource for Christian cowboys. Cowboys of the Cross has been providing cowboy church for the rodeo and cowboy community for more than 15 years. The website is your source for stories of faith and encouragement as well as devotions and news and information affecting cowboys of faith. Cowboys of the Cross leads cowboy church at rodeos and bull ridings in both Ontario, Canada and across the north and southeastern United States.   MORE ABOUT US HERE

An encouraging word strengthens a relationship

By Jim Bull / Cowboys of the Cross

I finally worked up the nerve to talk to my now wife, Laura, on September 22, 1999. Just over three months
later was New Years Eve and we, along with her roommate, were hosting an End of the Millennium
party. Some of the girls’ closest friends were there and I had come to know and respect them. During this
party, one of their friends pulled me to the side to tell me how happy she was for Laura and me; how
great we were for each other and how great I was to her.
I remember the feeling of the grin that spread across my face. The assurance, from a woman I barely
knew, was a great boost to my ego but, more importantly, made me want to do better. A little
encouragement goes a long way to building relationships, your own, as well as people you know or
Hebrews 10:24-25 says “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good
deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another-
and all the more as you see the day approaching.”
My wife and I have been married for 16 years. In that time, we have had great moments of expressing
our love for each other. We have also had times of complacency, when we knew we loved each other
but failed to make the effort to show it unashamedly. I have had times when I felt I was a failure as a
husband because I knew my wife was feeling lonely and abandoned because I was wrapped up in work
and not putting forth the effort to show how much I needed her; how much I loved her. I have also felt
lonely, like a hired worker or a servant. It is in these times we were lacking communication and the
expression of our love, not that we were ever lacking the love itself.
Proverbs 31:28 says “Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her”

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New stories and devotions every other Thursday

In all your ways...

In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make straight your paths — Proverbs 3:6
A Cowboy of the Cross believes God comes first and strive to follow His leading from a desire that comes from the knowledge of the cost of our salvation, paid for by Jesus Christ through is death on the cross. Through a saving and repentant faith in Jesus and the knowledge of his resurrection, we know God has forgiven our sins and will take us home to Heaven when our time here is done. Through God’s grace, we’ll get through the mistakes we make and grow more like Christ with study of Scripture, time in prayer and learning to hear God and following the leading of the Holy Spirit.

Meet our Teachers / Preachers and Site Contributors

Scott Hilgendorff

Scott heads up Cowboys of the Cross, a ministry dedicated to bringing cowboy church to rodeos and bull ridings across North America but with a focus on discipleship. The ministry evolved out of Riding for Christ Ministries, the name which Scott operated under for more...

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James and Jenn Douma

Hey everyone, my name is James Douma. I have been involved with the rodeo for the past several years. I am a full time firefighter in Ontario during the week and ride bucking horses on the weekend. I am married to an amazing woman named Jenn and together we have a...

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Michael Damien Moore

Michael Damien Moore is a bareback rider from Athens, TN and the nephew of rodeo producer Mike Moore. Originally from Alaska, Michael has started leading cowboy church, largely at rodeos in the 'south'.  The hat he is wearing in the photo was his father's. You'll see...

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Josh McCarthy

Howdy! My name’s Josh McCarthy and I compete in saddle bronc riding in the PRCA and I’m the youngest of five from northeastern Wisconsin.  I grew up in a Christian home and went to church every Sunday. I accepted Christ into my life when I was little but I didn’t...

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Jim Bull

I grew up always praying before meals and hearing that our friends that passed were in heaven. However, I never felt I knew who God was and definitely didn't have a relationship with Him. I lived my life thinking if I seemed like a good person, then I must be a good...

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Jesse Horton

I was 'raised Christian.' I can't remember a time before I was 10 years old that I wasn't a church-goer, though I remember several years of my teens where my family didn't attend church. I confessed my sin and my need for Christ when I was eight years old, but I do...

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Mail: Cowboys of the Cross, 3710 Warden Branch Lane, Gatlinburg, TN, 37738

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