Like the first pilgrims who arrived in America, we have plenty of reasons to thank God for the great harvest He gave us in 2019. As a family we are grateful and continue to grow in gratitude each year. Meditate on this post as we share our personal list with the top 10 reasons for giving thanks to God for all that we have experienced so far.
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The Best Response
I often tell our children that we will never have everything we want but we will always have more than we need. That is a great definition of prosperity. Just sharing resources with people around us is proof of that.
God has constantly gifted us through so many people, in our case people from many different nations and cultures. Similarly, we have the opportunity, as this week, to gather good quality food and clothing to give to people in need. The flow of God’s love constrains us, and the best response we can give him is by giving thanks to his name.
Thank God for …
1- Greater revelation of His heart
Our good intentions are not enough to be successful. Education and respect for the best are not enough. We need to find out the details of the covenant we have with God. And the Bible says He reveals His secrets to those who fear Him and makes them know His covenant. But we cannot even approach God and fear His name by ourselves. We depend on Him even to bring repentance to our hearts. However, we have an important role in agreeing to his calling and submitting to his word so that we can enjoy an intimate relationship that will lead us to life’s greatest surprises, the revelation of God’s heart;
2- Instruct us and treat our hearts in humility.
God never passes the limits with us, not at all. We have discovered over the years how the Holy Spirit is a gentleman. He truly respects our limits. And one thing we realized this year was that we somehow made room for His action in areas of our hearts that were still reserved. As much as we had talked about an unreserved surrender, he knew there were areas where we held domain. And one of those areas was pride. But thank God that has led us to learn and treat our lives, breaking pride and replacing it with genuine humility;
3- Knowledge and Perception of His Love
There is no person who is more loved by God than others. The Bible says that in giving Jesus to die for humanity on the cross, He loved us as much as He loved Jesus Himself. However, there are people who discover a greater perception of God’s love than others. The decision to exchange a sense of choice based on the ability to distinguish between good and evil for the simple obedience of faith makes one develop a greater knowledge of God’s love. Our family had never lived by faith before as we have done throughout this year. And this sacrifice of waiting in trust has led us to experience in practice what we had been praying for years, a greater perception of God’s love;
4- Full Health
One of the greatest gifts God has given us is the opportunity to enjoy full health. And accepting this gift is optional. Again God does not pass our limits. Our family has been blessed with abundant health and we know it has a cause. First, we recognize that through Jesus’ sacrifice we are made healthy. In addition, after six days of work we gratefully receive an exclusive day of rest, starting our shabbat on Friday evening until late Saturday evening. We eat well, sleep well, drink plenty of water … And we thank God that He is faithful to fulfill His promise of full health to our spirit, soul and body.
5- Provision Beyond Necessary
Every promise of God’s word is faithfully fulfilled if we do our part. If we are faithful to do our part, what can we expect from God? The Bible does not instruct us at any time to pray for our finances. Instead, it teaches us to be good stewards and generous, and therefore to succeed in this area. Our experience proves what is written about the Lord’s blessing that enriches us and adds no pain. We do our part, and God never fails to do his.
6- Answered Prayers
We could count so many testimonials but I will share the most recent. Our MacBook stopped working a few days ago and is out of warranty despite being used for just over a year. It is a working tool for our study activities and writing of this blog. But it didn’t turn on at all. We were always super careful and the kids never touched it. I called Apple, not solving the problem I had to go to the store and I was informed that the logic board needs to be replaced for the cost of $475. I would never pay that fortune to fix a once expensive laptop. We prayed about it and after a few startup attempts here I am writing this post with the MacBook working perfectly. Thank God for helping us one more time!
I know it seems normal for many to be exhausted and begging for 2020 soon. The point is that normal for the world is not normal for God. I am struck by how many people simply do not accept the idea, not to say the commandment, of a weekly rest day. God does not need to rest but He decided for some reason to separate one day after the six when He created all things to take a breath. God stopped and enjoyed the result of his work. In addition, he ordered that the seventh day be set aside to “cease.” We are extremely grateful to God for shabbat. As we obey His word and rest, He pours supernatural favor upon us;
8- Protection and Deliverance
We have the video recording of a fall that Micael took from a tree in mid-year. Only by a miracle of God could he get up and walk normally to the car. Thank God for His protection that day! In some situations we see God’s hand giving us deliverance, in many others we do not even notice. That is why we daily ask God to protect us, for one of the most common motives of prayer in the Bible is for protection and deliverance, and we trust that He is faithful to always cover us. The enemy is always a coward. But whoever walks in integrity, depending on God by faith, always walks safely;
When we came to CFNI, knowing that we would be among people from 60 countries on every continent, we were expecting new friends. People from such different cultures, each at a different time in their lives, have been a true gift from God to our family. Our children play with their friends every day and we have enjoyed relationships that will bless us all our lives. Thank God we have even learned to accept especially the reality that the greatest and best friendships are not won by us, but freely given by God;
10- Vision 2030
I remember when we brought a sheet with some drawings to our pastor Carlito Paes and he told us that this was not a vision. I thought it was. But God has shown us from that initial image and from our leaders beautiful details of what He has for our family. Our vision is to bless families of all the nations with the Gospel of Jesus. And this time here at CFNI has been special in discerning the next steps to accomplish in us and through us all that God has prepared for our family. We thank God for all that He has done so far, and even more for the amazing vision He has for our future.
Prayer: God, I thank you for you are good and your love endures forever. Help me to align my heart with yours to live with faith and gratitude all you have for my life, today and forever, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
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