Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Final Thoughts on Gratitude


Politics. Religion. Current events.

These are subjects that I generally don't blog about.  Not because I'm apolitical or nonreligious or uninformed.

Once I was asked by a friend of mine why I don't blog much about my religion.  I thought today would be a good day for that.  Those of you that know me in my "real" life know this side of me.  I try to study as much as I can, learn whenever I can, and apply what I've learned to be more like my Savior, Jesus Christ.

We were reminded a few weeks ago during a Relief Society lesson that repentance is a privilege we are granted.  That one sentence has changed my perspective.  It is a gift, freely given, so that we can improve who we are and draw closer to God.  It is the chance we are given, extended over and over and over again, to change.  To be better.  To become more God-like.

The scripture in Matthew 18:22 about forgiving others seventy times seven struck me.  You see, I have a few weaknesses that I struggle with--patience topping that list. I struggle with it more than a few times every day.  Even if I required repentance for my impatient acts only twice every day, I've already exceeded in one year 730 times needing forgiveness.  And that's an estimate provided only for easy calculation. Christ said we were only required 490.  And yet, those closest to me continue daily to forgive me of my faults and missteps, still loving me.

I believe in a God who loves me, who is a Being of flesh and bone who will forgive me as often as I come to Him, broken and contrite, prepared to try and be better.  Not to be perfect, but just to be better. My responsibility is to approach Him in prayer as often as possible to seek forgiveness for these mistakes, to take advantage of this freely extended gift, as often as required.

Today, I am grateful for repentance.  For eternal forgiveness.  For a plan that included our humanity, a plan that knew we would falter, and yet still wanted us to try.  I am grateful to a God in heaven that hears prayers, that loves me even though I still stumble and sin.  My God is a wounded God, One acquainted with grief, familiar with sorrow, and well-versed in consequence.  My God is a forgiving, kind God, One who loves unconditionally, forgives endlessly, and requires my will be in line with His.

Happy Thanksgiving.
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17 comments:

  1. Well said. Such an amazing gift that He bestows on us. Covering all of our brokenness and filling in all of our gaps and shortcomings...And the best part is, he does it every moment of every day.
    Have a beautiful Thanksgiving.

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  2. I love the way you introduced your post Jen. I too stay away from many of these topics, as it is such a personal part of who I am, I only feel comfortable sharing it with those who I know will feel safe doing so. I also believe it is our challenge to let others know we are Christians by our lives, in everything we say and do. This is the true challenge.
    Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.
    Dana

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  3. You live it well, and you explained it beautifully. Happy Thanksgiving!

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  4. Thanks so much for sharing, Jen. I never thought of repentance as a gift - but what a great way to think of it. I hope you and your family have wonderful Thanksgiving!

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  5. i enjoyed reading your thoughts about repentance, Jen. It is a gift I take advantage of frequently.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    =)

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  6. That passage about the 70 times 7 has been in my mind much lately. . .great minds think alike.

    I too am so very thankful that God doesn't keep count on my sins. . .ahh the blessings of Grace!

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  7. I like what you said about repentance being a gift. I always look at it as more of a punishment. Perhaps if I looked at it as a gift, it would come more easily. Today I am grateful for you giving me a new perspective on a precious gift. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

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  8. Awe...sweet forgiveness. Such a great gift for all us sinners. For we all are that! Thanks for the reminder and have a great Thanksgiving.

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  9. I read this first thing this morning and it truly set the spirit for my day. Happy Thanksgiving!!

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  10. Well put, Jen. It reminds me of a scripture that I love in Alma? that says essentially- he suffered and was crucified, so that he would know how to succor us. I am grateful too!

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  11. This is a really nice post, Jenny. It's nice to see you able to express it so well and freely. I'm thankful for people like you who are non-assuming, yet honest.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

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  12. forgiveness...such a sweet sweet word.

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  13. Beautifully written, so glad you decided to share. That portion of the lesson really struck me as well. I love it when an entirely new light is shed on a subject I thought I knew. Happy Thanksgiving!

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  14. Well, that's my God.
    Of all the gifts, forgiveness is one of the greatest.

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  15. I love your blog and find myself agreeing with all you write about. My new years resolution is to come to your class on Thursday mornings. I hear it is soo good. I am only making that one goal, so that I will do it. Thanks for all the great posts.

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