In this season of Thanksgiving, I’m thankful for Jesus—Savior, Lord, Friend, Refuge, Strength, Peace, Joy, and the Lover of my soul. I’m thankful for Jesus.
I’m thankful for His incarnation—that the Word would become flesh and dwell among us; that Jesus would leave the glory and safety of heaven to walk this broken earth with sinful people like me; that Jesus would condescend to us and enter our world through a virgin’s womb; that Jesus would obey the Father and enter this world when he knew His mission would take Him to the cross; that Jesus would subject himself to the same temptations we face and yet never sin even once. I’m thankful for the incarnation.
I’m thankful for His cross—that Jesus would endure the beatings, the insults, and the nails for the likes of me; that Jesus would be humiliated before the world that He might save the very world that put Him on the cross; that Jesus would bear the sins of the world in His body (were not my sins alone too much to bear?); that Jesus would die so that I could live. I’m thankful for the cross.
I’m thankful for His resurrection—that on the third day Jesus came forth from the grave alive and well; that death and the grave could not hold Him for long; that Jesus is a living Lord who can hear our prayers, intercede in our behalf, and continue His work in the world through His Holy Spirit and His church; that Jesus is the resurrection and the life and that if I believe in him, I keep on living with him in heaven even when I die; and that because He was raised, He will also raise my body on the last day. I’m thankful for the resurrection.
I’m thankful for His friendship—that He never leaves me or forsakes me; that He forgives me when I sin, finds me when I lose my way, and restores me when I fail Him; that He walks with me and talks with me; that He counsels me and convicts me and encourages me; and that His love will never let me go. I’m thankful for His friendship.
I’m thankful for Jesus. I want to love Him with all my heart and soul and mind and strength. And while I can never be Him, I want to be like him. In her book, My Hearts Cry, Anne Graham Lotz titles the chapters in her book with the very qualities of Jesus I want to be evident in my life: more of His voice in my ear, more of His tears on my face, more of His praise on my lips, more of His death in my life, more of His dirt on my hands, more of His hope in my grief, more of His fruit in my service, more of His love in my home, more of his nearness in my loneliness, more of His courage in my convictions, more of his answers to my prayers, more of His glory on my knees, more of His grace in my relationships. And perhaps when such qualities show up in me, my thankfulness for Jesus will be more than words.
I’m thankful for Jesus: who He is, what He’s done for me; what He does for me; and what He will do for me forever—for me! Who am I that He would take notice of me? Who am I that He would love me and care for me and save me and walk with me and want me to spend eternity with Him? I don’t understand it, but I believe it.
And at Thanksgiving and all year long, may I never cease to be amazed by it all!