Thankful

Thankful for a Gift

This has been on my heart since before Thanksgiving, I just haven’t had much time to formulate it into a manner which makes sense to me so I am just gonna put it out there.

In the Sunday morning services at my church this year the pastor was talking about the true meaning of thankfulness for a Christian. This wasn’t a new concept for me, I have heard sermons like this before but our new pastor has a way of putting things that makes me think much more deeply than I have in the past. In his sermon the Sunday before Thanksgiving he asked a simple question that many of us probably really haven’t taken much time to ponder. So, I am gonna ask you the same question. You can choose to respond, or not. But please ponder it, deeply, because it might change how you see this time of year, but it might also change YOU.

What are you thankful for AND how long will it last?

After having just come out of the Thanksgiving (last month here in America) season and now just about to celebrate Christmas I wonder if you really know what you are thankful for. Moreover, you many even know what you are thankful for, but have you really taken the time to contemplate how long it will last?

If you are like most people, you probably can answer that questions with a long list of things you are thankful for.

Good health.

A house, a car.

A job, an income, a BIG income.

Family: parents, children, grandchildren, brothers, sisters, cousins…

Clothing, a warm place to lay your head, a retirement account, a big TV, etc.

The point of the questions is, how long will those things last? Health is fleeting and as we age it will deteriorate. Wealth is temporary and can be gone in an instant. Those material possessions you have worked so hard for are going to break down and need to be replaced at some point in the future. The point: none of it lasts. It never will. No matter how hard we try to make it happen, it just won’t.

An Eternal GIFT

it is Christmas Eve and we are about to spend time with family. I love them a lot, however they are only temporary. That thought both pains me and gives me joy. I want them to be with me forever and I want them to live forever, but the only way that can happen is if they do one thing: accept a gift they neither deserve nor can they earn. Thankfully, most of them have accepted that gift. Maybe you would like to as well?

The GIFT came in the form of a little baby so long ago. God sent his son to earth so that he might endure a human life and then give himself, as a sacrifice, to atone for my sins. Not just mine, but everyone’s, including yours. That is a GIFT no one except a loving God can give. Think about that. He gave up something that means the most to Him so that we might have eternal life. How many of us would willingly give up what means the most to us, just so someone who deserves nothing could have everything?

This Christmas we celebrate isn’t about those gifts that may be under the tree. Most of us know this, but many of us fail to grasp the weight of it and simply go about our busy lives failing to appreciate the GIFT that was given to us.

What are you thankful for AND how long will it last?

How long will it last? That question has haunted me. Everything is temporary, except one thing – eternal life. An eternal life given to me, you too if you accept it, through the birth of a child, which eventually led to his death.

The only thing I am sure of this Christmas season is that I have accepted GIFT that no one else can give me. I have accepted a GIFT that nothing can destroy, be stolen, or lost. I know as I end this year and begin the next that no matter what happens I have a GIFT that can never be taken from me. It is forever! There are no other things in life that can make that claim. No other things in life that can be guaranteed with that much certainty. No other things that will last beyond this world.

If you don’t have that kind of thankfulness and if you haven’t accepted the GIFT no one else can give you, I would encourage you to seek someone out that knows what this GIFT is all about. You can contact me, if you like, and I will do my best to answer your questions, but I am still learning and growing in this lifelong journey.

However you do it, do it soon! Remember, those things you sat around a table and were thankful for about a month ago are only temporary and you never know how much time God has granted you on this ball of dirt and water. The sooner you choose to accept THE GIFT that will not fail, the sooner you can live in confidence of an eternal life. What better thing to be thankful for than that?

I can’t think of anything.