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Wednesday, November 19, 2008

A Time to Remember

Next week all across America families will gather around tables filled with an abundance of delicious food and deserts. These lavish feasts are the center point of our Thanksgiving celebration. This was the day the early settlers set aside to show their gratitude to the Lord for His abundant blessings. Today the tradition lives on. As a nation, we have so much to be grateful for.

Recently while reading Psalm 107, I was reminded how Israel recounted the many blessing that God had poured out upon them. Today, I would like for us to consider these examples of how the Lord redeemed his people in their times of trouble.

In the beginning of Psalm 107, we see the Israelites wondering in the wilderness, separated from God, and without anything eat. They cried out to the Lord in their distress, and

“He led them by a straight way till they reached a city to dwell in. He satisfied their longing soul…with good things.”

There was a time in my own life when I felt like I had no purpose or direction. I was in bondage to sin and separated from God. In my greatest time of need I also cried out to the Lord and just like Israel, He heard my cry and delivered me.

The next group of people we see in this Psalm are those who sat in darkness, prisoners in chains. I have visited several jails in my lifetime, there is such hopelessness, despair and shame. Although I’ve never been bound by physical chains, I have been bound by chains of fears and insecurity, which have caused me to feel imprisoned and alone. But just like He did for Israel, God

“…shattered the doors of bronze and cut in two the bars of iron”,

that had me imprisoned. Yes, God has set me free from those strongholds and for that I am so thankful.

The third group mentioned in this Psalm was those who were near death and could not even eat because of great physical affliction. We have all dealt with sickness, and some of us have known someone who was that ill. But thank God that Jesus is our healer! In this Psalm the writer says,
“He sent out his Word and healed them, and delivered them from their destruction.”
I know in my darkest hour, it is only God’s Word that can bring hope and healing. Oh, let us give thanks to God for His unfailing love!

And finally, there were those who were caught in a fierce storm at sea. They were so troubled and confused that they staggered like drunken men. They were at their wit’s end. How many storms have all had to endure? How many times have we had to cry out to God to save us from the tempest? And like Israel when,

“…They cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress. He made the storm be still, and the waves of the sea were hushed…and he brought them to their desired haven.”

Oh, it will take an eternity to adequately give thanks to God for all the blessings he has bestowed upon us.

At this year’s Thanksgiving dinner, may God be the centerpiece of our tables, and like Israel may we never forget all that he has done.

“Let us thank the LORD for his steadfast love, for his wondrous works to the children of man!
And let us offer sacrifices of thanksgiving,and tell of his deeds in songs of joy!”

Let’s ponder;

When is the last time you boldly testified to the redeeming work of God in your life? Maybe at this year’s Thanksgiving celebration there just may be that long lost family member who is desperate to hear about what God can do.

Lord let us never forget your redeeming work in our lives. You have been faithful to lead us, to guide us, and to protect us in our journey here on earth. I praise and bless your holy name. Amen.

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Blogger Denise said...

Really lovely my friend, blessings to you.

November 19, 2008 at 12:07 AM  
Blogger Sheryl said...

wow, what a great post! there is a family member (or 2) who need to know Jesus. though times are tough in our family i will be thankful for all that God is doing.

love ya my friend,

November 19, 2008 at 6:45 AM  
Blogger luvmy4sons said...

AMEN! A big hearty AMEN! Blessings to you! Praise to our God!

November 19, 2008 at 8:23 AM  
Blogger LauraLee Shaw said...

I learned so much in this post. Love it! And I sure wish my table looked like that picture!

"At this year’s Thanksgiving dinner, may God be the centerpiece of our tables, and like Israel may we never forget all that he has done."


November 19, 2008 at 9:09 AM  
Blogger Laurie Ann said...

Awesome post, Susan! God's redemption and healing of our family is something we are thankful for every day, but especially at Thanksgiving (and Christmas). This year we will be testifying about God's hands holding my Uncle throughout his bout of brain cancer and holding up my grandmother in her old age. It's been at least a year since she's fallen badly, which is marvelous in itself. God as our centerpiece...He will definitely be there! Thank you so much for sharing such a beautiful devotion with us. I love your heart!

November 19, 2008 at 9:15 AM  
Blogger Mimi said...

A wonderful post Susan...and I also pray that we remember to tell someone of His deeds in songs of Joy!!!

November 19, 2008 at 2:37 PM  
Blogger elaine @ peace for the journey said...

Hey Susan! Too great, let me tell you why. I've recently been studying this very passage in hopes of writing on it soon. You've given such great insights here...not sure I need to now! Thank you for your kind thoughts to me today. Your prayers and well-wishes mean so very much.


November 19, 2008 at 4:46 PM  
Blogger Homesteader in Training said...

God is so good to us! It should be Thanksgiving every day. As we have so much to be thankful for. May He receive all our praise this Thanksgiving and always.
Great post Susan.

November 21, 2008 at 7:11 AM  

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It is good to hear from you... thank you so very much for leaving a note on the table. That makes us smile!

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