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Thinking of God with Larry Sheehy - Be thankful on Thanksgiving

Thinking of God with Larry Sheehy - Be thankful on Thanksgiving

Thinking of God with Larry Sheehy - Be thankful on Thanksgiving

Larry Sheehy

      Lord, help us better understand...and be thankful.
      "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" (Matthew 27:46) There are many passages in the Bible which I'm not sure I fully understand. There are quite a lot I am sure I don't understand, some of them not at all! This is one of which I have no doubt - I KNOW I don't fully comprehend its significance! But, after studying it in the light of the complete revelation about Jesus' death, one thing is sure: it should only deepen our awareness of the love demonstrated for us on the cross.
      Surely there are few passages, if any, which relate as much to Jesus' anguished cry as do the words from the prophet Isaiah:
      Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. Yet it was the LORD's will to crush him and cause him to suffer, and though the LORD makes his life a guilt offering, he will see his offspring and prolong his days, and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand. (Isaiah 53:4-5, 10)
      What is abundantly clear from these distressing-yet-comforting words is that Jesus' suffering was the will of his father, and its intent was our salvation. What selfless sacrifice! What faithfulness to his father's will! What love for us!! No wonder Paul states it as he does: "But God demonstrated his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us." (Romans 5:8)
      In stark contrast to what some men might be willing to do - that is, "die for a righteous man" (v. 7) -- Christ died for the unrighteous. He did what none of us would even think of doing. He gave his life for those totally undeserving of it.
      And that last phrase in Isaiah 53:10 is so reassuring: "...and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand." Because of Jesus' humble faithfulness, God's eternal plan for our redemption will finally be successful! Hallelujah!!
      As we observe our national day of Thanksgiving this week, let us remember the blessings of God and the sacrifices of all those who've gone before us, as well as those today who continue to give of themselves that we might enjoy the freedom and prosperity of our country. Most of all, may we come to understand better the sacrifice God made that we might know the eternal blessings found only in and through his son, Jesus.

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