Posts Tagged ‘thankful’

It’s that time of year again.  I’ve noticed lately that some people say, “happy turkey day!” instead of “happy thanksgiving!”  Have you noticed that?  At first I didn’t think too much about it and kind of thought it was cool, but then I gave it another thought.  Is thanksgiving just a time of getting together with friends and family and gorging ourselves with all the delicious goodies on the table until we feel more stuffed than the turkey?  After that we waddle off to the family room to watch football the rest of the day until our eye balls just about fall out of our heads?  Is that what it is about?  That must be “turkey day!”

The First Thanksgiving, painted by Jean Leon G...

I didn’t grow up in a Christian home, so Thanksgiving was more of a family gathering where we did enjoy all the wonderful food my mom and aunts prepared.  It was fun having all the company and playing with my cousins in the afternoon.  We didn’t have television so the conversation was around the deer hunting stories the men told.  It was a fun time that’s for sure.  Also, in school we were told about the pilgrims and how they celebrated the first Thanksgiving with the Indians and gave thanks to God for the bounty.  That’s about all I knew about it.

By the way, if you are thankful, who are you thankful too?  Are you thankful to your boss for giving you a good job so you can have that shiny new car in the drive?  Are you thankful to your wife for preparing a wonderful meal?  We need to check our thanksgiving and see who we are thankful too.  We can be thankful to our bosses and spouses, but above all we need to be thankful to God who supplies all our needs, and gives us all things to enjoy.  God is above all else.  He is the one who put it on your bosses heart to hire you.  He is the one gave you the ability to do your job.  He is to get all the thanks and glory!

Later in life I became a Christian and Thanksgiving now has new meaning for me.  Yes, I am thankful and for so much.  I am thankful that God saved me from myself and gave me a new life in Christ.  I am thankful for being adopted into God’s family.  I am thankful for the Word of God and all that it has meant to me from that time on.  Yes, I have a true Thanksgiving because I am thankful to God.

1 Thessalonians 5:18  in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

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Psa 100:1-5 NASB

A Psalm for Thanksgiving. Shout joyfully to the LORD, all the earth.
(2)Serve the LORD with gladness; Come before Him with joyful singing.
(3)Know that the LORD Himself is God; It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves; We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.
(4)Enter His gates with thanksgiving And His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him, bless His name.
(5)For the LORD is good; His lovingkindness is everlasting And His faithfulness to all generations.

What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving? 

I’ve been rolling that around in my head the past week or so.  There are so many things like family, friends, my home, my husband, good health, enough money. These are all very special but they aren’t the most important things.

I have to reach back 35 years to grab onto the one thing I’m the most thankful for.  My life as I had planned it had vaporized. There I was a desperate, helpless, wretched person.  I had hit bottom.  

 I had lost my job, my new car, and everything that was dear to me.  Material things were all gone.  I only had a few pieces of clothing left to my name.  I did have a roof over my head, but that even leaked. I didn’t have any direction in my life.  I was very ill and didn’t know what was causing all those spells where I’d become so afraid that I thought I would fall down and die, which made me even more afraid. 

I was afraid I was going crazy. Fear had taken control of me.  My body was wracked with anxiety.  I’d think about all the unusual symptoms I had, like when my heart would race, and I’d feel dizzy and out of control.  I knew it wasn’t normal, but I didn’t know what it was.  The fear of the unknown haunted me daily.  How much longer could I hang on? 

I had tried to find the answers.  I tried to hid my fears in alcohol. Yes, it did take the edge of panic off, but it was only a temporary fix.  The fear would return the next day.  At one point I turned to astrology.  I plotted my horoscope and tried to find something good to look forward to.  That didn’t do it. 

I was afraid of telling a doctor how I really felt and avoided them like the plague.  I was sure if I told the truth they would lock me away somewhere and throw away the key.  If I did confess a bit of my maladies to the doctor I’d get a prescription for some kind of medication.  I was afraid of that too.  When I tried it, I got bad side effects and so I’d quit it.  I was getting nowhere fast.  I felt like I merely existed, dredging through each long miserable day. 

By this time I was at home all the time.  I listened to the radio for company and somehow found a Christian station.  I listened to it with interest for several months.  I heard the gospel message given a number of times and was curious, but that was all.  I tried to read a Bible but couldn’t understand it.

One day as I sat on the couch I glanced over at the coffee table and noticed a Sunday school paper someone had sent me in the mail.  Out of boredom I picked it up and read.  There was a true account of a man who was a Christian.  He had turned his back on God at some point and things in his life went steadily downhill.  He lost his wife, his family, his home and job.  He had hit bottom.  I could identify with some of that!  Then, this man woke up one day and realized how he had turned his back on God.  So, he repented of his sinful ways, confessed to God, and came back to him.  It wasn’t long and his life was turned around.

Hum!   I wondered, is that what I’m doing wrong.  That article really got my attention.  My eyes were opened and I realized for the first time that I needed God in my life too.  I had tried so many years to control everything, to figure the angles, and come out on top.  It was hard and didn’t work. I knew in my heart that I too was a sinner and that I needed someone bigger than myself.

I prayed and talked to God.  I told Him I knew His Son, Jesus Christ, came to earth to die for our sins.  That we are all sinners, and that I was certainly one.  I asked His forgiveness and said I’d change my ways.  I told Him that I also knew that Jesus rose again from the grave and was alive in Heaven with Him now.  I asked God to allow Jesus to come into my life and in fact take the reins of my life as I could not do it any more.  I simply gave up, stepped down off the throne of my life and let Jesus take that place as Lord.

So, there you have it.  That day in my life is what I’m the most thankful for.  The day that changed my life.  I became a brand new person on the inside.  I was adopted into God’s family and received the Holy Spirit to live in me to help me with my life.  What a glorious day that was!  God in His mercy reached down to me, a wayward sinner, and took me in His arms and gave me a second chance at life.   I’ll be grateful for eternity!

I just want to add that things haven’t been all rosie since that day.  I’ve had my trials and disappointments.  I’ve been ill a lot of the time, but my Lord has gone with me through everything and I can give Him all the glory and honor for getting me through it all.  Without Him I shudder to think where I would be right now.

I’d like to hear what you are most thankful for this year.

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God's Handiwork 08

God’s Beautiful Handiwork!

God has given us all things to enjoy and my heart is thankful.  When I look around me I am very thankful for the wondrous beauty God has created.   The beauty of Fall in my part of the country can almost take your breath away.  And, yet, when we think about it, the Bible teaches us that we live in a cursed world, where even nature is cursed.  If this is what cursed looks like I often ponder, “How magnificent Heaven must be!”

Every year at Thanksgiving people stop to thank God for the things that matter most to them.  Usually we thank God for the things here on earth like our families, homes, cars, money, and all the material things we have.  We also stop and thank him for providing for us.  We thank him for the Thanksgiving turkey and all the trimmings we indulge in on that special day. 

This year my heart is thankful for those things, but even more, I’m thankful for my salvation.  I realize that if God had not in his mercy and grace chosen to adopt me into his family, I’d be on my way to spend eternity in Hell.  That is a scary thought! 

“Oh, God, how gracious you were to call me.  I am not worthy.  I am only a fallen, wicked, imperfect, sinner, whom you loved enough to include in your plan of salvation.  You even sent your only Son to take on my sins and die on the cross and endure the wrath of sin I deserved while He paid the penalty for me.”  That is truly amazing!

I ask.  “Why me Lord?”  “Why me?  I’m not worthy to be part of your family.”  I’ve come to realize that it wasn’t up to me.  I didn’t choose God, He chose me. 

Ephesians 1-4 says, “He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world…”

That boggles my mind! To realize that our most Precious God chose me way back in the past before He even created the world. He knew me and chose me to be one of His own.  Isn’t that a tremendous thought?

Again I say, “Why me God?”  God is Sovereign and Righteous.  He can do whatever He wants to.  He could have just as easily passed me by.  And, if He did that would not diminish Him one iota.  He would still be God in all of His fullness.  He didn’t have to chose me, but He wanted to.

My heart is thankful for God’s wonderful creation all around us; it is thankful for my undeserved salvation; and it is thankful for the future God has in store for me.

This is just the beginning, and it is going to get better and better as we spend eternity with our Lord and Savior. 

We will have troubles here on earth as we attempt to live out our daily lives.  But we must realize that those problems are for a purpose.  God is Sovereign and He is in control.  Nothing comes our way without Him allowing it.  Look at Romans 8:28.

Rom 8:28-29 NASB  And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. 

I realize that there is a purpose for everything.  Even when I’ve suffered many health problems throughout my life, there was a purpose in it.  Praise God for that! 

He goes on to say in Romans 8:29  For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren;

I realize God’s purpose in my sufferings in this life is to make me more like Christ.  That is the purpose for you too if you know Jesus as your Lord and Savior.  He wants to shape us and mold us so that we become more and more like Christ.  We will not get there completely until we reach Heaven.

1Jn 3:2 NASB  Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not appeared as yet what we will be. We know that when He appears, we will be like Him, because we will see Him just as He is.

We will be like Him.  What a thought!  We will be made complete in Jesus in the future.  Isn’t that another amazing thought, and something to look forward too.  My eyes are turned to the future; not on the past.  Listen to this:

2Co 5:21 NASB  He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

We are not just declared righteous when we become saved, but we have the hope that when we enter into Heaven we will become the righteousness of God in Christ.  We will become as holy, just, and righteous as God Himself.  That blows my mind away.  How can it be?  Only through God’s wondrous grace and mercy!

Below is a picture of the Second coming of Jesus Christ.  He comes out of Heaven as King of Kings and Lord of Lords to set up his Kingdom.  He is coming in judgement on mankind.  We will be following Him.  We will be riding white horses as He is, and we will be clothed in fine linen.  We are part of the armies of Heaven which is shown to us here. 

Rev 19:11-14 NASB  And I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse, and He who sat on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and wages war.  12  His eyes are a flame of fire, and on His head are many diadems; and He has a name written on Him which no one knows except Himself.  13  He is clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God.  14  And the armies which are in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, were following Him on white horses.

Now my heart is just about busting open with thankfulness!  We have a wonderful, exciting, beyond our imagination or comprehension,  future with our Lord Jesus.  We can’t even fathom  the things to come.  Believe me the future won’t be boring. 

Oh, Lord, thank you for saving my soul!

Thank You Lord for saving my soul,
Thank You Lord for making me whole.
Thank You Lord for giving to me,
Thy greatest salvation, so rich and so free.

thankful

 

 

 

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