A New Year: Thrive 1/6

a-new-year-thriveIt’s a God thing!

I have heard this said many times and experienced it in my own life many times. My explanation of this is there is no other explanation. Last summer we were babysitting two of our small great-grandsons. We have a swimming pool in our backyard and Ty (two years old) loved swimming with all of us, but always wore his life jacket. This particular day my husband and son were on the patio putting together a barbeque pit, and Ty was sitting in his little chair watching them. My daughter-in-law and I were inside with his younger brother.

I knew Ty was in good hands. My husband is always overly cautious when it comes to kids and the pool so there was no reason for me to be concerned.

All of a sudden, I had a sudden urge to ask about Ty’s whereabouts.

“Can you see Ty?” I asked my daughter-in-law. She immediately jumped up and ran out the back door and saw he wasn’t sitting in his chair! “Where is Ty?” she screamed while running toward the pool.

There he was – face down in the pool. My daughter-in-law jumped in the pool, grabbed him, and handed him to my husband who had jumped in with her. Ty immediately began crying! He was scared, but other than that, he was perfectly okay. Just one more minute and…

We were all hugging him, crying, and thanking God for His mercy and perfect timing. I am so thankful for a loving God who speaks to us even when we are unaware of our need.

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Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good, for His steadfast love endures forever.

Psalm 136:1

Ann Wilson

An Easter Anthem

The mercy and grace bestowed upon us is overwhelming. Tucked deep in the book of Job is a verse revealing the magnitude of God’s mercy in light of our sinfulness.

“I sinned and perverted what was right, and it was not repaid to me. He has redeemed my soul from going down into the pit, and my life shall look upon the light” (Job 33:27–28 ESV).

In this passage, Elihu is describing a hypothetical man and his response to God’s great mercy. We relate. We see our testimony in this declaration. Our broken world reeks of sin. Our fleshly natures long to be fed with that which the world offers. We have been tempted and we have fed ourselves. We have taken the gifts of God and perverted them to fulfill our own desires. And yet we are forgiven.

“For as high as the heavens are above the earth, So great is His lovingkindness toward those who fear Him. As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us” (Psalm 103:11-12 ESV).

Paul tells us in Romans 5:8 Christ died for us while we were still sinners. We were in mid-perversion when He went to the cross to redeem us from the pit. As my husband has diligently preached through the years, we do not bathe to come to Christ…He is the bath. Glory! What an incomprehensible, amazing love! What does this man do in response?

He sings (Job 33:27).

And Can It Be

And can it be, that I should gain

An interest in the Saviour’s blood?

Died He for me, who caused His pain

For me, who Him to death pursued?

Amazing love! How can it be?

That Thou, my God, should die for me?

Amazing love! How can it be?

That Thou, my God, should die for me?

Verse 2

‘Tis mystery all! The Immortal dies:

Who can explore His strange design?

In vain the first-born seraph tries

To sound the depths of love divine.

‘Tis mercy all! let earth adore,

Let angel minds inquire no more.

‘Tis mercy all! let earth adore,

Let angel minds inquire no more.

Verse 3

He left His Father’s throne above,

So free, so infinite His grace,

Emptied Himself of all but love,

And bled for Adam’s helpless race:

‘Tis mercy all, immense and free;

For, O my God, it found out me!

‘Tis mercy all, immense and free;

For, O my God, it found out me!

Verse 4

Long my imprisoned spirit lay

Fast bound in sin and nature’s night;

Thine eye diffused a quickening ray,

I woke, the dungeon flamed with light;

My chains fell off, my heart was free,

I rose, went forth and followed Thee.

My chains fell off, my heart was free,

I rose, went forth and followed Thee.

Verse 5

No condemnation now I dread;

Jesus, and all in Him, is mine!

Alive in Him, my living Head,

And clothed in righteousness divine,

Bold I approach the eternal throne,

And claim the crown, through Christ my own.

Bold I approach the eternal throne,

And claim the crown, through Christ my own.

Amazing love! How can it be?

That Thou, my God, should die for me?