Posted by Orrin Woodward on November 25, 2010
On Thanksgiving morning, as I sit at my desk, overlooking the Bay of St. Lucie, watching the sun rise out of the water, I am thinking thankful thoughts for all the blessings in my life. Blessings that begin with my freedom to enjoy my faith, just as you have the freedom to enjoy your faith. As a Christian, I ponder the immensity of God’s love for us. How is it possible for a sinful man to be reconciled to a Holy God? The answer, after many years of personal struggle, toil, and pain, along with God’s patient grace, that Jesus Christ laid my sins upon Him, and, laid His righteousness upon me, still makes me pause in thankful wonder. That God Himself, would offer unmerited mercy to men, men deserving of eternal punishment by their sins, but receiving full pardons by the finished work of Jesus Christ, should make all, even the hardest of hearts, repent. God’s grace is sufficient to forgive all penitent sinners, which means His grace is sufficient for you and I. This was my first area of thankfulness on this Thanksgiving day.
Still in a reflective mood, my thoughts move to my beautiful wife (Laurie) of eighteen years, a wife who patiently bears with her husband’s faults and foibles, a wife who has loved me even when I was unloveable, truly representing the spirit of Christ on earth towards everyone she meets. My marriage to Laurie, although tough on both of us for the first five years, as we learned our roles and responsibilities, has, among many blessings, produced four phenomenal children. I love spending time with Laurie and the kids daily, reviewing different lessons learned in life, discussing the principles that work, as well as the principles that don’t work, preparing our kids for the toughest school that they will ever attend, the school of life. The thoughts, questions, and ideas, generated from these family discussions, have taught me as much as I will ever teach them, forcing me to dig deeper into my understanding of the world and the challenges involved in growing up in society today. On this day of Thanksgiving, don’t forget, amidst the Turkey and football games, to hug your family, thanking them for the joy that only family can bring to life.
This leads me to my friends, friends who have been there for the ups and downs of this journey called life. Living life, without friends, is like watching a movie without color; one may be able to follow the plot, but he loses the enjoyment of the unfolding story. I want to thank all of our friends personally, for their encouragement to us when we hurt, for their fidelity to truth when we err, for their tears of pain when we suffer, for their mirth and joy when we celebrate. Because of our faithful friends, friends who share their lives with us, the Woodward family is the most thankful of families, having the movie of life come alive, not just by knowing the plot, but enjoying the unfolding story, filled with color and content. May all of us be thankful on this Thanksgiving day, remembering to share our thankfulness to all those who make our life worth living. God Bless, Orrin Woodward