The Secret & Holy Power of Thanksgiving

Melissa Thwing

Melissa Thwing

Social Media & Marketing Manager

It started as a celebration of good harvest and it’s turned into a national holiday of turkey, football and thankfulness. Although gratitude may be flowing this Thanksgiving, the other 364 days of the year it sometimes feels like there is a heftier serving of complaining than a spirit of gratitude. To combat this negativity, I made a list of all the things at I’ve griped about in the past year. And I waited. I listened. And here’s what God revealed to me.

When my house feels messy and unkempt, I’m thankful that my home is in heaven.

When I feel my voice is too small, I am thankful that the energy of Christ is working in me. The same power that rose Jesus from the grave burns like a fire inside of me.

When I feel like I’m failing as a mom, I’m thankful God chose me to be a momma to my sweet baby girl. He appointed me.

When I don’t measure up, I’m thankful I have been saved, not by works, but grace.

When my heart aches for the poor, the powerless and the outcast, I am thankful that one day they will be in the presence of their creator and they will know just how loved they are.

When my mind wanders and my worries consume my thoughts, I’m thankful God reminds me to cast my anxieties to him, because He cares for me.

When I raise my voice at my husband, or I say things that I wish I could take back, I’m thankful for the cross. I’m thankful that my sin is paid for.

When I’m overcome with exhaustion, I am thankful that He gives me rest. He gives me strength.

When I don’t have the words, I’m thankful He already knows my needs.

When I feel unnoticed or insignificant, I’m thankful that the God of the universe formed me in my mother’s womb. He has singled me out as supremely important. I’m made in His image.

When my jeans are too tight, my skin is less than flawless, and my hair is unkempt, I’m thankful that God gave me my able, healthy, complex body to carry on His work.

When I’m unsure of my future, I’m thankful that he planned my earthly existence before I was born.

When the words people have spoken have left deep wounds, I’m thankful that God praises me. He tells me I’m fearfully and wonderfully made.

When I feel that I’m not living up to my Christian expectations, when my Bible is a little dusty and I fall asleep before I even lift up a prayer, I’m thankful that there is nothing I can do to make Him love me less. He welcomes me with open arms. He’s a safe place, every single time.

When I worry about my daughter growing up in a world flooded with evil and hatred, I’m thankful that God’s angel armies are always by her side.

When it feels like there is more divide in this world than unity, I’m thankful that we are all united as citizens of heaven.
When the answer seems unclear, I am thankful for the word of God that feeds my soul with truth.

When my earthly flesh is consumed with negativity and complaining, I choose to have a heart of thankfulness for God, the giver of all good gifts. For every good and perfect gift is from above. I believe there is power in gratitude—the enemy flees. The forces of darkness can’t stand up to hearts that give thanks and honor to God.

Share this post

You Might Like...
Chris Zarbaugh

Do I think about myself too much?

Everyone has that moment where they answer the inevitable question: “What do you want to be when you grow up?” To be completely honest, I never really had dreams of making an impact of any

Dave Wilson

Church can be boring.

It’s truly amazing to me that I am a pastor at a church, considering my journey getting here. I grew up being dragged to church by my single mom whether I wanted to go or

Never miss another blog post.
Subscribe to be notified when new posts are published.


Learning Labs

Experience a closer connection with God and His presence in your life while meeting others who are pursing the same.  Explore rhythms and practices that can help us abide in the love, grace and hope of God.

Please email with any questions.



Birmingham Campus

We are offering a time for our congregation to gather after the 10am service for prayer in the Groves Auditorium, 20500 W 13 Mile Rd, Beverly Hills, MI 48025.

On Sunday evening, Dec 5, parents of high school and middle school students are invited to the second half of our Edge gathering at Genesis Church, 309 N Main St, Royal Oak, MI 48067, at 6:15pm. We will have a breakout to equip parents in caring for themselves and processing pain with their children in times of tragedy.

Parents & Student Resources

Parents – self care is critical. It’s important to do your own processing with another adult so that you can be more present as your child processes. Here are tools that you can use to get you started.


Helpful Blogs

Other Materials

Counselors Are Needed After Tragedy

“The aftermath of the Oxford shooting tragedy will undoubtedly result in traumatic symptoms and experiences across our communities for quite some time. Healing the brain through evidence-based therapies is absolutely possible with clinical guidance. There is a valuable village of Trauma Therapists with collective resources standing by for Oxford, for both direct and secondary survivors to engage in therapy. Until then, we honorably hold a sacred space, as students, families, staff and school partners continue to mourn.” -Laura Azoni, LMSW, Founder of Sanctuary Services

Orion Campus

We believe that unity at this time is more important than ever. Several churches in the area are partnering together to offer space for students to begin the process of healing.

We will have several grief and trauma specialists on site this Sunday evening at our Orion Campus (4640 S Lapeer Rd Lake Orion, MI 48359) from 5-6:30pm and will have a night of prayer, worship and an opportunity for students to process with each other.

Tate Myre Funeral:
Monday, 12.6 Visitation 1 to 8pm
Tuesday, 12.7 Visitation 10-12pm and funeral at Noon

Clinton Township Campus

We will be offering a time for our congregation to gather after each service for a time of corporate prayer in the Greatroom. Prayer will be offered at 10:15 am and 12:15 pm. (25000 Hall Rd, Charter Twp of Clinton, MI 48036)

This Sunday at 3:30 pm as a community we want to gather, pray and mourn together. We are all looking for answers and wondering why tragedy happens but we can find hope and peace in Jesus. 

Troy Campus

Join us Sunday night, December 5th for a Community Prayer Vigil at Kensington Church at 6:00 pm. Invite friends, family, neighbors, and coworkers to come together for a time of hope and prayer. 

Following the Vigil, at 7:00 pm, there will be breakouts for students and for parents to process and be equipped in caring for themselves and those around in times of tragedy.

Marriage Classes

What grows marriages? Focusing on the two of you and being in community!
The Marriage Course includes seven sessions, designed to help couples invest in their relationship and build a strong marriage. Some couples do the course to intentionally invest in their relationship, others are looking to address more specific challenges. Either way, the course offers essential tools and practical ideas to help you build a relationship that lasts a lifetime. The Marriage Course is based on Christian principles but designed for all couples with or without a church background.

Please email with any questions.

Financial Peace University (FPU)

Financial Peace University (FPU) is a catalyst to help people live in financial freedom and enable them to have a posture of openhandedness. We have witnessed numerous Kensington families experience life change as a result of applying Biblical truths to their personal finances. The real blessing is seeing people create lives of margin that allow them to hear and respond to the Lord’s calling on their lives.

Please email with any questions.

Bible Basics

Whether you are brand new to the Bible or have been reading it for decades, Bible Basics is a course that will help you understand the overall flow of the Bible. Over the course of several weeks, learn how the Bible came from the original writers to the English versions we have today. We’ll look at the big-picture story of the Bible and how all the individual books add to the whole. We’ll even learn a little about the history of the Jewish nation. But most of all, we’ll grow in our awe of the amazing author of this amazing book!

Please email  with any questions.


Clinton Township




What is my purpose? What value does the Bible have in my life? How do I pray? How can I grow in confidence to share my faith? These are the big questions that are at the heart of what it means to have a relationship with God. Alpha is a space to explore life’s big questions, to say what you think and to hear other people’s points of view. Over ten-weeks you will explore and discover while listening to weekly topics, participating in table discussion, and developing community. Alpha courses meeting in-person gather around a meal.

You don’t have to come for the whole series—just check it out for the first session and see what you think. No pressure.

Please email with any questions.


easter Tickets

No tickets needed for Good Friday


Together Again

updated June 23, 2021

It’s been life-giving to be in-person for our weekend services since last July when we reopened. If you haven’t yet, we invite you to join us in person sometime soon.

Reservations and ticketing have been discontinued at all our campuses.

Masks are optional at all services, events, and ministry gatherings for kids, students, and adults. We know that everyone needs to make the right health decisions for themselves and their family, so if you feel comfortable removing your mask, you may. And if you’d like to continue wearing a mask or face covering, you may do that as well. This is a personal choice that only you can decide what is best for yourself when attending in person at Kensington.

If you are sick, are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, or have possibly been exposed to COVID-19, please plan to stay home and participate in our services via our many online streaming options.

At the start of the pandemic, Kensington’s Executive Team commissioned a group of staff members as a COVID Task Force to establish protocols and procedures for the safety of our church community. Thanks for sticking with us throughout all the changes and adjustments over the past 15 months.

We’re grateful to be together again!