Sometimes it is right to question how it’s possible to give thanks in a shaky world. Many of us feel that our world is indeed shaky today. All sorts of events are picking at the sense of “normalcy” that we long for in our hearts. Natural disasters wiping out entire communities, leaders without moral groundings tearing apart our common humanity, and deranged killers erasing innocent life all make it hard to feel thankful. Yet I am thankful. Deeply thankful. May I tell you why?
All around me, even in the midst of the chaos, are signs of the unmerited goodness of God. Unmerited goodness. Grace. Our faithful God is a goodness giving God. The beat of my heart is a gift. The breath I just took, and each of the next breaths I will take. All unmerited. All given to me by a gracious God. Food and friendship, family and health, laughter and contentment, memories and aspirations, all are signs of God’s unmerited goodness.
Even when one of these blessings comes to an end, God’s grace remains. God’s faithfulness never ceases. His most incredible gift, unmerited goodness far surpassing anything or anyone else we know, is found in one place only. God so loved me (and you, too!) that he gave us his Son Jesus. In Jesus Christ there is a quality of life that rises far above everything. In Christ we experience goodness that cannot even be contained in the years we have on earth. In Christ there is unmerited goodness that is played out across all the ages of eternity.
The day of Thanksgiving itself provides a day on the calendar where we are reminded that everything we have comes from God’s unmerited goodness. As a Christian, a follower of Jesus, we are to live our whole lives responding and marveling at God’s grace. For that, I am truly thankful. May you have a happy and spiritually rich Thanksgiving this year.