The Thanksgiving holiday is coming up in just a few weeks and I hope you are able to spend time with family and friends. I pray that you will enjoy making new memories as you celebrate all God has done in our lives this year.
During Thanksgiving we should not only express gratitude to God for His blessings on Earth – the physical, tangible gifts – but also His spiritual gifts. Through faith in Jesus Christ, God has blessed us more than we could ever imagine.
For example, we are blessed to know God as our Father (Romans 8:15).
We are His children, and our Heavenly Father cares for His children as He loves, protects and provides.
In Isaiah 9:6 we see Jesus called the Prince of Peace. In our world today, with all the strife and continued acts of hatred and violence, how we desperately need peace that passes all understanding; peace that only comes in knowing Jesus.
I am thankful that despite the sinful condition of this world, Jesus remains the High Priest (Hebrews 4:15) who is always interceding for His people.
As Jesus is the High Priest, He is also our Redeemer (Colossians 1:14).
He desires to remove all our sin and clothe us with His righteousness and holiness. In this role we truly see the steadfast, unconditional love and forgiveness of our Savior. His mercy and grace still overwhelm me, even after a lifetime of serving Him and walking with Him.
We are blessed in Christ to be able to know and understand His Word. From beginning to end, the Bible points to Jesus as the Way, the Truth and the Life (John 14:6). I am thankful for the gift of the scriptures, as we learn in God’s Word about His perfect plans and purposes.
To me, one of the most beautiful passages in scripture is Ephesians 1:3-14. Paul writes that God has “blessed us with all spiritual blessings in the heavenly places in Christ.” This text describes how God loved us before the foundation of the world, granted us redemption in His Son and sealed us with His Holy Spirit.
How amazing to live every day knowing that we are sealed with God’s Spirit! To live in light of the truth that we are forgiven and redeemed by the Creator of this world is an incredible promise.
North Carolina Baptists, I wonder if we are really living in this truth? I wonder if we sometimes let the distractions, cares, burdens and trials of this life weigh us down so much that we forget about these spiritual blessings?
I pray that in the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving we will focus our hearts on the depths of the treasures that belong to those who know Jesus Christ.
“In whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace.” Ephesians 1:7