Like most other Canadians, I joined in with the traditional celebration of Thanksgiving this past weekend and there was so much that I had to be thankful for. I have so many wonderful blessings from God and I’m grateful for every one of them. I have to pinch myself sometimes to realize that I’m alive and that the Lord brought me through a nasty battle with cancer and gave me back my health, and I’m truly thankful for that. I’m married to an amazing man, my best friend, who loves the Lord with all his heart, and I have many wonderful children and grand children who I love. But there is something far greater than these that I’m thankful for more than just one day a year.
The Bible says in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” There is absolutely nothing in this world that can even come remotely close to this gift and there is absolutely nothing in this world that any Christian should be more thankful for than this gift.
It’s really easy for us in this busy, conflicting world to be so involved in our own lives that we forget just how important this gift is. We forget the anguish and the torture that Jesus endured as He gave up His own life to become a sacrifice for ours; as He bore upon His own body all the sins and punishment of the people of the world just so they wouldn’t have to be punished. This is undoubtedly the epitome of love and what we should be thankful for more than anything else in the world – every day and not just one day a year.
I believe that most parents wouldn’t think twice about taking punishment or even death for their own children who they love and share their lives with. But how many of us would offer to be tortured and killed for someone else who we don’t even know just so that they could be spared? How many of us would offer to die for someone who mocked us, cursed us and who even without any remorse raped and killed people we love? I know I couldn’t do it. Only Jesus could do that.
Many of us accept that because Jesus went to the cross for us we will automatically go to Heaven and be with the Lord forever after we leave this earth. This is good, but sadly, many of us don’t pursue the Christian walk beyond that acknowledgement; we feel that it’s our inevitable destiny because we’re Christians and we live the way we choose here. We pursue material possessions, great wealth and personal accomplishments as we enjoy periodical bouts of the sinful life – with repeated repentance, of course.
We need to realize that Heaven is our home – our only home – and it is our goal in life, but while we’re here on earth we have a job to do and that is to teach others about Jesus and to get as many people saved as possible. Jesus tells us in Mark 16:15, “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” This is not a suggestion; it’s a command that we need to fulfill, and we do it because we love the Lord and we want to get other people to know and love Him, too. We do it because we are thankful for what He has done for us.
We can’t do this on our own merits, though. We need to ask God to fill us with His Holy Spirit so that we can understand the Bible and know what is the perfect will of God. In Mark 1:8 it says, “…but He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost.” And so once we’re saved we need to ask God to fill us with His Spirit. “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?” … Luke 11:13
Through the Holy Spirit, we will learn all about God and what He wants us to do. The Bible should be our only source of information and His Spirit should be our only teacher because they are the same. When we allow men to teach us we are at risk to receive bad direction, mis-interpretation and manmade doctrine instead of Bible truth. God tells us to study His Word and in 2 Timothy 2:15 it says, “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”
We want to be a good witness for God, and we do this by living the way Jesus tells us to and by not engaging in the sinful ways of the world. While we adhere to the laws of the land, God is the one we answer to and God is the one who we obey. He tells us in Romans 12:2, “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”
This not only includes what we do and where we go, but also the way we treat our body because it is the temple of the Holy Spirit. In 1 Corinthians 3:16 it says, “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?” And in Romans 8:11 we learn the power of the Spirit in us, “But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, He that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by His Spirit that dwelleth in you.”
When we read Isaiah 53:5, we learn that through His Spirit, and the knowledge of God and faith in His Word, we can be healed of our afflictions because we were healed at the cross. “But He was wounded for our transgressions; He was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed.”
We can believe God to heal us when we’re sick because it was accomplished on the cross. But in the meantime, we need to keep our bodies healthy by eating good, healthy foods and by not engaging in drugs, alcohol and cigarettes.
Jesus accomplished a lot on that cross. He paid the price for our sins; He restored us back to our Heavenly Father; He gave us His Spirit to live in us and keep us in open communication with God our Father (something the world cannot do, John 9:31)); He healed our bodies so that all we have to do is accept it and believe it and we have it; and He gave us the hope of being in Heaven with Him forever.
Jesus deserves our thanks and our praise every day, not just one day a year. He has definitely given us life and life more abundantly, and to Him we give all the glory – every day! Not just one day a year.
“In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” … 1 Thessalonians 5:18
I would like to offer everyone of you a FREE e-book copy of my book, Let Faith Arise! I wrote it during a dark time in my life when I sought the Lord to heal me of a deadly cancer. I studied, I learned and I built up my faith so that I could truly know God. I kept inspired notes and messages while in that journey and when I was healed I formatted them into a book. It is my hope that it will also help to build your faith and bring you closer to God so that you, too, can know the love that God has for you so you will also be able to give Him thanks, every day – all day long.
Get your copy today and be blessed.