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Saturday, September 14, 2013


"I am grateful to him who has strengthened me, Christ Jesus our Lord, because he considered me trustworthy in appointing me to the ministry." 1Tim 1:12

It is almost impossible to speak or write too often about gratitude, particularly in an era of unearned privilege and entitlement. A doctor friend was telling me last week how grateful he is to be able to help people. Though working now in the New York City area, where he has access to the wisdom and experience of so many other practitioners, he still misses the people he served in rural Pennsylvania where he was the only gastroenterologist in a 200 mile square county.

St. Paul writes continually about his gratitude to the Christ who strengthened him during every trial. Neither shipwreck, nor imprisonment derailed nor discouraged him beyond hope because he knew that Christ had appointed him to his ministry, and no one nor any trial could take that away. Frederick Buechner says it powerfully:
“And now brothers, I will ask you a terrible question, and God knows I ask it also of myself. Is the truth beyond all truths, beyond the stars, just this: that to live without him is the real death, that to die with him the only life?” (F.B.)
When we realize that living without faith and without Christ is death and that living in him and for him is life, we cannot fail to be grateful.

Today, thank God for the marvelous gift of faith and ministry.

What in your faith most moves you to gratitude? 

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