Category Archives: Thanksgiving

That I May Be Like Jesus

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I saw this on Facebook and had to post it here.  😀   What is normal, anyway?

Jesus was NOT normal.
He was God in the flesh.

A Lover of Souls.
A Healer for the Hurting.
A Friend to the Outcast.

I need to keep my eyes fixed on Him.  Not others’ opinions.  Not this world’s idea of normality.

If I give, even in my poverty, am I more or less like Him?
(He didn’t have any place to rest His head.)

If I love, even when my heart is broken, am I more or less like Him?
(He was a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.)

If I reach for the hurting, even when the pain in my soul doesn’t subside, am I more or less like Him?
(A bruised reed He will not crush. He said, “Come to Me all you who are weary and heavy-laden and I will give you rest.”)

I want to be like Jesus.

I won’t be considered “normal.”

But that’s quite all right with me…

He was an outcast…to the Nth degree.

So let’s go outside, where Jesus is, where the action is–not trying to be privileged insiders, but taking our share in the abuse of Jesus. This “insider world” is not our home. We have our eyes peeled for the City about to come. Let’s take our place outside with Jesus, no longer pouring out the sacrificial blood of animals but pouring out sacrificial praises from our lips to God in Jesus’ name. Make sure you don’t take things for granted and go slack in working for the common good; share what you have with others. God takes particular pleasure in acts of worship–a different kind of “sacrifice”–that take place in kitchen and workplace and on the streets. (The MSG)

So, let us go out to Him outside the camp, bearing His reproach.
For here we do not have a lasting city, but we are seeking the city  which is to come.
Through Him then, let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God,
that is, the fruit of lips that give thanks to His name.
And do not neglect doing good and sharing, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.
Hebrews 13:13-16

1
I have one deep, supreme desire,
that I may be like Jesus.
To this I fervently aspire,
that I may be like Jesus.
I want my heart His throne to be,
so that a watching world may see
His likeness shining forth in me.
I want to be like Jesus.

2
He spent His life in doing good;
I want to be like Jesus.
In lowly paths of service trod;
I want to be like Jesus.
He sympathised with hearts distressed,
He spoke the words that cheered and blessed,
He welcomed sinners to His breast.
I want to be like Jesus.

3
A holy, harmless life He led;
I want to be like Jesus.
The Father’s will, His drink and bread;
I want to be like Jesus.
And when at last He comes to die,
“Forgive them, Father,” hear Him cry
for those who taunt and crucify.
I want to be like Jesus.

4
O perfect life of Christ, my Lord!
I want to be like Jesus.
My recompense and my reward,
that I may be like Jesus.
His Spirit fill my hungering soul,
His power all my life control.
My deepest prayer, my highest goal,
that I may be like Jesus.

With a Grateful Heart

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The LORD is good to everyone.
He showers compassion on all His creation.
~Psalms 145:9

For the LORD Most High is awesome.
He is the great King of all the earth.
~Psalms 47:2

Praise the Lord!
Give thanks to the Lord,
For He is good,
And His loyal love endures!
~Psalms 106:1

In everything give thanks.
For this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
~1 Thess. 5:1

If these words are true, and I believe they are, we can give thanks in all things.   It may have been a tough year, maybe the hardest you’ve ever endured.  The news declares much of the world is suffering.   Personally, you may be suffering more than you ever imagined possible.  It doesn’t make sense to you and you’re wondering how to give thanks in this. 

God is still God.
And you are still His creation.

All the people of the earth are nothing compared to Him. He has the power to do as He pleases among the angels of heaven and with those who live on earth. No one can stop Him or challenge Him, saying, ‘What do you mean by doing these things?’ ~Daniel 4

He has the power to do as He pleases…and sometimes, what He pleases is not at all pleasurable to us.

However, if the words are true —
And again, I believe they are —
We. can. give. thanks.

How?
When the pain is unimaginable…
When the loss is too great…
When the tears won’t stop…
How do we do it?

When all you owned was taken from you, you accepted it with joy. You knew you had better things waiting for you in eternity. Do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord, no matter what happens. Remember the great reward it brings you! Patient endurance is what you need now, so you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that He has promised. ~Hebrews 10

With our eyes fixed on Him…NOT on the circumstance:

Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how He did it. Because He never lost sight of where He was headed–that exhilarating finish in and with God–He could put up with anything along the way: cross, shame, whatever. And now He’s there, in the place of honor, right alongside God. ~Hebrews 12

With patient endurance.
Don’t throw away your confidence in the Lord.
Don’t lose sight of where you’re headed.
You can put up with anything along the way…just as your Savior did.
Know: better things await you in eternity.

With a grateful heart,
I can give thanks in all things,
Knowing this is God’s will for me,
In Christ Jesus…amen.