Thankfulness doesn’t just happen. Instead, it is something that must be chosen and intentionally proclaimed. In my journey of discovering all the aspects of what true joy looks like, I quickly came to realize that thankfulness is an integral part of the topic. And yet, when long days happen, the food gets burnt in the oven, and everyone seems to be irritated (even myself!), I realize that thankfulness is still just as important as the day before- when the sun was shining, the food was perfect, and everyone was in the best of moods.
So I decided that other day – that long day when sleep still seemed hours away – that if I am going to be thankful constantly and consistently, I must take intentional action and a lot of prayer. I sat down with my Bible that evening and opened to Isaiah. I started reading and every time I came across something that encouraged me – a promise, a characteristic of the Lord, a mercy of God, etc. I wrote them all down.
And with that, the journey began. Finding many uplifting verses and phrases from the book, I decided that the next time I was downcast, I would intentionally meditate on one of the verses that I had found. The discipline to sit down and do something when the flesh seems opposed, can be hard, and yet how rewarding even a few minutes can be, when soaked in the Word of God!
“Come now, let us reason together, says the LORD: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow;
though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.”
~ Isaiah 1:18 ~
I know that’s a very familiar passage, but even a few minutes of meditation should result in praise to the Lord! What a simple statement, and yet how marvelous! For the believer, what rejoicing and humility should ensue.
The phrasing of “white as snow” and “like wool” denotes the idea of pure, washed and clean. We, who were dead in trespasses and sins, are now as white as snow? Yes. It makes no sense apart from Christ, the spotless lamb of God. John rightly testified to this Christ – “Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!”. This Lamb, the spotless & pure One, makes us pure and spotless before Him by the blood that He shed for us!
Are those sins, so vile and wretched before the eyes of a holy God, now like wool? Yes. Again, it makes no sense apart from Christ. Paul wrote in Galatians 1: “… the Lord Jesus Christ who gave Himself for our sins…” (Gal. 1:4). This should result in praise and deep-seated humility. There is no reason for boasting in ourselves for this purity since it was all because of Christ that we are now clean.
And time would fail to examine the contents of Hebrews 9 & 10 where Christ is described as the Priest who offered a sacrifice for sins, once for all. The blood of bulls and goats never took away sins, they foreshadowed to One who could do that – Jesus Christ.
What are you thankful for today?
“I will praise the name of God with a song; I will magnify him with thanksgiving.” -Psalm 69:30