Day 28: Cathy Roser

Psalm 100:4-5 “Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His Name.
For the Lord is good and His love endures forever; His faithfulness continues to all generations.”

I would like to share with you a powerful insight the Lord graciously showed me through the Women’s Bible Study at Grace last year.  We looked at the story of Rachel and Leah.  Each of them had something the other did not – Leah wanted to be loved by Jacob and Rachel wanted to have children.  Leah had children; Rachel was loved.  Each wanted what the other had, and not only were they not thankful for what they did have, they made themselves and everyone around them miserable for it!
I have been waiting for the Lord’s answer for something – something good, something certainly within His will – for a very long time.  Perhaps you have too.  Although I have, at times, let that desire get between me and the Lord, that is not what I want.  So He taught me the antidote for that, which is having gratitude for all of the many good things He has given me.  The way into intimacy with the Father is through thanksgiving, “…let us be thankful, and so worship Him.” (Heb. 12:28)
My old nature “naturally” follows “the law of sin and death” and focuses on the negative; on what I don’t have.  But praise God that “through Christ Jesus, the law of the Spirit of life has set me free from the law of sin and death,” (Rom. 8:2) so that my old nature is dead and I have a new nature (His!) and my privilege – even obligation – is to walk according to that new nature:  “Therefore, brothers, we have an obligation, but it is not to the sinful nature, to live according to it…” (Rom. 8:12)  
In the Spirit, by the Spirit, I can cultivate gratitude.  His grace is enabling and allows me to “give thanks in all circumstances.” (1 Thess 5:18)  He enables me to see and focus on all that I do have to be grateful for; and good heavens it’s a lot!- salvation, eternal life, His Spirit within, mercy, redemption, union with Jesus, this new nature, no condemnation, His Word.  And while in this earthly realm...a loving husband, family, friends, a granddaughter, the Body of Christ, sight, heat, laughter and on and on…truly ten thousand reasons for my heart to find!
This is not an original thought, but a good one – in heaven I’ll never be able to praise God while I’m in pain or lacking something I’ve asked the Father for, because there is no pain or lacking there.  Only here and now can I “offer a sacrifice of praise” (Heb 13:15) and thereby honor Him in both the blessings and the pain.
"Oh Father, we joyfully give thanks to You, not only for the overflowing abundance of Your love toward us, but also for Who You Are, the good and great Almighty God, Creator, Redeemer, Restorer, Messiah.  We fix our eyes on Jesus, Your great gift to the world, and thank You daily for Your goodness to us."

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