Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thankful and Grateful.......

I wanted to post what I am thankful for this year.  There is so much in my life to be thankful and appreciative of.  I want to hopefully give those of you who might read this today an opportunity to stop and take stock of how truly blessed you are no matter the circumstances in your life.  Regardless of the place we find ourselves in life and the circumstances surrounding us, I guarantee that if you take a moment you will find there are amazing blessings in your life from God to stop and be thankful for.

I have been blessed with far more than I deserve simply by the fact I was born in America.  I have freedom, food, shelter, a job, and so much more because I was blessed enough to be born where I was.  I have an amazing wife who has stuck by me through thick and thin no matter the circumstances.  I am the father of four amazing boys even though I only have two here, with the other two in Heaven. 

I am blessed with amazing parents, sisters, in-laws, and a huge extended family that have played huge factors in who I am today.  I have a group of friends who are second to none and have walked with our family through our darkest days.  I have a church family and pastors from two different churches who have also stood with our family through it all as well.

The biggest thing I am thankful for this Thanksgiving day is the fact that I have a Savior who died for me so that I might live.  He took the punishment I so justly deserved and took it upon himself, so that I could stand before Almighty God washed clean of the sin I could have never wash away on my own.  It is because of the act of the cross, the shedding of Christ's innocent blood, his death, and most of all his resurrection that I am able to stand redeemed and clean.  This is what I am most thankful for.

My hope for everyone who might read this is that each of you will realize that no matter your circumstances there is so much we can thank God for.  Even in the midst of our family losing two of our boys I am able to thank God for his saving grace.  He has never left my family or I, and has continued to carry each of us through our darkest and deepest valleys.  I hope that each person who reads this will find that same peace, comfort, and joy.  There is a hope for each and everyone of us if we will only reach out and accept it. 

Happy Thanksgiving to each and everyone one of you!  I will leave you with this passage from Philippians that captures what I am most thankful for.

So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Philippians 2:1-11

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