As long as I can remember Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday. I can remember waking up as a little girl with the distinct smell of onions, celery and the very specific blend of herbs and spices my mom uses to make her stuffing. I was so excited to get together with our big family…no matter which side…my mom is one of 11 children and my dad is one of 5. So there were always a ton of people to gather with no matter if we hosted or went somewhere else. My children often ask me why Thanksgiving is my favorite and the answer is joy.
As a child I could never put into words why I loved Thanksgiving so much. But as I grew older I was finally able to decipher that Thankfulness leads to joy….because the root of joy is gratitude. And on the flip side, Teddy Roosevelt said it best “Comparison is the thief of joy.” I love that we set aside a day each year to be thankful for God’s abundant blessings. I have a saying painted on the walls of our house that says “Write your sorrows in sand and your blessings in STONE”. If you think about it, in the grand scheme of eternity as believers, our sorrows are fleeting…momentary and won’t be remembered because scripture tells us in Revelation 21:4 that Jesus, the Cornerstone…the Rock…He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” And the Stone the builders rejected…He is the Giver of every good and perfect gift.
Not only do a I keep a prayer journal to be able to look back on God’s faithful answers to prayer but because of my love of Thanksgiving I decided to document gratitude everyday in November each year on this outlet to honor God for His goodness and to encourage others to seek the joy of the Lord, because as it says in Nehemiah 8:10 it is our strength. God led me to name this site “Wonders of His Love” even though I wanted to name it “Immeasurably More”. I also have a gratitude journal that spans my entire life detailing everything from coming to know Jesus at the age of 7 to hearing Him daily whisper His Word to my heart…the births of our miracle babies to the little book Jackson wrote for me…and the purchase of our home and God leading us to sell it soon…when God healed my heart…and when He broke it to achieve His purposes. Things big and things small, because there is always, always, always something to be thankful for. But do I worship the blessings?…or the Blesser?
As I was looking through the pages of my journal and thinking and praying about Jesus being our Rock, God led me to the passage in Exodus 33 where Moses begs God to go with Him as He leads the Israelites and God promises…My presence will go with you and I will give you rest. Moses then asks God how the world will know that they are His people and God promises Moses the law. Moses then asks God to show him His glory and the Lord tells him to stand on a rock nearby and He would put him in the cleft of that rock and as He passed by He would reveal Who He is and cover Moses with His hand because man cannot not stand to see the glory of God and live. What I love is that in His response to Moses’ request that God reveal His glory, God revealed His love instead. In Exodus 34 He says
“The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin.
And in verse 10 says: Then the Lord said: “I am making a covenant with you. Before all your people I will do wonders never before done in any nation in all the world. The people you live among will see how awesome is the work that I, the Lord, will do for you.
I now see the reason for “Wonders of His love” because when I look back at my gratitude journal it is exactly what I see! Jesus, my Rock…the solid ground on which I stand has been my Protecter every single moment of my existence, my Shelter in the midst of the storm, my Savior, my Strength in dealing with a chronic illness, my shield from the things I ask of Him and the things I think are best for me…and He always answers in love. It’s ironic that on Thanksgiving weekend 2002 I fell ill with this terrible disease…a seaming curse…in which now I find blessing. I sought healing…but instead I received God Himself, the Healer which is far greater. In perfect love, He has cast out all fear and shown me that anything less than Himself is sinking sand.
As we go about this Thanksgiving week in the coming days until Thanksgiving and beyond may you find yourself marveling at the Wonders of His love and writing your sorrows in sand and your blessings in STONE!