Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. There is no commercialization, there is great food, and there is the Macy’s parade! During this time of year, as Christians, we have a wonderful opportunity to reflect upon God’s goodness and mercy in our lives over the past year. While we are thankful for family, friends, health, our jobs, and many other blessings, I want to share with you seven awe-inspiring reasons why I am thankful.
First of all, I am thankful that God sovereignly overcame my spiritual inability and depravity. Romans 3:10-12 says, “as it is written: “None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.” I was enslaved to sin and Jesus rescued me out of this pit of destruction and granted me saving grace.
Secondly, I am thankful that God miraculously made me alive in Christ. Paul writes this about our sinful condition in Ephesians 2:1-5: “ And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience- among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ- by grace you have been saved.” As one who was dead in sin and an object of God’s wrath, He graciously gave me new life in Christ and raised me from spiritual death.
Thirdly, I am thankful that Christ victoriously obtained by eternal redemption through the cross. Ephesians 1:7-8 says, “In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight.” Christ redeemed me from my sin by paying the price in His blood to rescue me from bondage. I am so thankful that He lavishly poured His riches of grace upon me—an ill-deserving sinner. Many times we think that we are undeserving, but yet that is actually not true. We are not undeserving, we are ill-deserving. We deserve death, hell, and eternal condemnation under God’s wrath, and Jesus came to save us from that penalty.
Fourthly, I am thankful that the Father irresistibly drew me to Himself. Jesus gives us this wonderful promise in John 6:37: “All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.” God ensures through His Holy Spirit that all of His elect children will infallibly come to Him through this irresistible grace. I am thankful that the Holy Spirit called me to salvation and granted me the grace to respond.
Fifthly, I am thankful that God mercifully granted me the gifts of repentance and faith. The Scriptures tell us that even the faith that we exercise to come to Christ is in itself a gift. (Ephesians 2:8-9). I am thankful that God opened my heart like He did to Lydia. Acts 16:14 tells us, “One of those listening was a woman named Lydia, a dealer in purple cloth from the city of Thyatira, who was a worshiper of God. The Lord opened her heart to respond to Paul’s message.”
Sixthly, I am thankful that God through Christ has declared me “not guilty” in His sight and has granted me permanent and eternal access to His throne. Paul tells us about this wonderful truth in Romans 5:1-2 which states, “Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.” Not only has my sin been accounted to Christ, but His righteousness has been accounted to me and I stand innocent in His sight and therefore under no condemnation (Romans 8:1).
Lastly, I am thankful that the God will absolutely complete the good work He started in me. Philippians 1:6 states, “And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” I find great comfort in the fact that I am eternally secure in the sovereign grip of God’s hands. He will ensure through His grace that I will persevere to the end and He promises to complete the work in me.
As you eat turkey, watch football, and sleep on the couch this Thanksgiving, take time to worship and praise and thank the Lord for His wonderful provision in your life and most importantly for your salvation by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone to the glory of God alone!