Thanksgiving day. It seems like a good time to remember the things that I am thankful for. Here’s my list:
1. God’s grace, mercy and faithfulness which have been poured out on me over the past 50 years of knowing Him. He has sustained me in faith, blessed me with His providence, provided all I need and grown me in grace. He has not dealt with me according to my sins, but has removed them from me as far as the east is from the west. He has proven the truth of Matthew 6:33:
But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
God has used many means to bring this about, especially His church and His word.
2. Family. Mary, my faithful and loving wife, has been His greatest gift besides my salvation. Her passion to know God is a constant encouragement and challenge to me. I am grateful for my parents (Dad would have been 99 today) and my children and grandchildren. Their lives are a tangible connection with the past and with the future.
3. A place. Although my life here in this world is temporary, I am glad for the privilege of living on the same land I lived on as a child, with good and, sometimes, painful memories of growing up.
4. Work. I am thankful for abilities to teach, preach and write that I can still use for God’s glory.
5. Health. I am blessed with better health than many my age so that I can still walk and hike in the mountains, hear and see others, travel to see family and friends, and enjoy work and recreation.
6. Finances. God has always provided for us and continues to do so. Although we depended on donor support as missionaries and the salaries of a pastor and a teacher, we have never missed a meal, gone homeless, or suffered the lack of any basic needs.
7. Purpose and hope. I am thankful for a compelling reason to live fully for God’s glory all the days that He has assigned me on earth, and for the promises of God to be with me to the end of life and, because of the mercy and grace of Jesus Christ and His atonement for my sin, to receive me to Himself when this life is over.
I think that covers the main categories.
What are you thankful for today?