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Count Your Blessings

Count Your Blessings

Monday, January 7, 2013

John 19:30 - "When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said "It is finished," and He bowed His head and gave up His Spirit.


For some reason I woke up singing, "Count Your Blessings" this morning, the old hymn that reminds us of just how much God has done for us.  I'm not sure why its been on my mind, I haven't heard it or sung it recently that I know of and just to be honest I'm not a huge fan of the song.  It always seemed a little too focused on self for me.  "Count  YOUR blessings, name them one by one, count YOUR  blessings", but then the next line shifts our focus to what matters, "And it will surprise you what the Lord has done." And of course another line says, "see what God has done." 

So in reality its not a self centered song at all but a song that calls us to look around at our lives and see what God has done for us.  That's pretty good advice isn't it, for heading into a new year?  Go back and look at last year and see what God did for you last year, and celebrate Him and be thankful to Him, for we know as the Bible says, "every good and perfect gift comes from above coming down from the Father of Light."  So we do need to take time and look back and celebrate and be thankful.  We need to "rejoice in the Lord always."

I think this is good advice for us as individual people, but I also think it is good advice for us as families.  We should take time to sit down with our spouse's and our children and say lets look back and be thankful.  Let's look at what God has done for us in 2012 and take time to rejoice in that as we go into 2013.

I also think churches should do this - look back at the past year and say let's give thanks to God for what He is doing.  Paul certainly gives us a precedent for that as he writes to many of the churches and says, "I thank God for you," and then many times he goes on to tell them that he is basically thankful for what God is doing in their lives. 

As I look back at 2012 I realize I have a lot to be thankful for, God has blessed us in many ways.  If I were to name them one by one the hard drive on my computer couldn't not handle it. Last year in 2012 we found out that my wife was expecting our 3rd son.  We can look back all the way to January of 2012 and see that God allowed the doctors to realize that our second son had a seizure disorder and that he was having 200-300 absence seizures a day.  We just thought he would "zone out" for a few seconds, but thanks to the doctors finding out what the problem is, he is on the way to recovery.

I could go on and on about the blessings of last year, but as I think about all that God has done for me, John 19:30 sums up the greatest blessing that He has given to us.  It is a picture of Jesus on the cross, it is a picture of Him dying for me, it is a picture of Him saying "It is Finished."  When he said it however it wasn't a declaration of defeat but rather of victory.  Jesus triumphantly proclaimed "it is finished", and what He was saying was I've completed the work that God the Father gave me to do.  I have finished the way of salvation.

That is why salvation can truly be found in no other name except for the name of Jesus.  He is the way, the truth, and the life.  He made a way possible for us to be saved and that way was the cross.  For on the cross of Calvary, Jesus took not only my sins, but He also took the wrath of God in my place.  Now if I trust Him I don't have to fear the wrath of God.  I am forgiven.  I am declared righteous by Him.  It is finished, nothing else needs to be done.  I've had a lot of blessings from God over the past year and in reality throughout my life but the greatest blessing is the blessing of Jesus of died in my place for me.  It is finished, so count your blessings but also celebrate the BLESSING.