This year, I am thankful for something quite odd in today’s culture. I am thankful for a God who is, without apology, jealous and controlling.
Yes, I am thankful for a God who demands absolute loyalty and obedience from his servants and children, a God who is intolerant of anyone seeking to rival him in his glory, especially in terms of power over others, or even over ourselves. I am thankful for a God who is a perfectionist in the extreme, allowing not the slightest spot, blemish, wrinkle, or stain into his spiritual presence in Heaven.
I am thankful for a God who has decreed a death penalty for any and all infractions of his law without exception, who cannot be moved to change his mind and change the rules based upon an emotional appeal to hard circumstances, but always carries out his decrees. I am thankful for an obstinate God who never changes his ways, never changes who he is and what he believes, never waivers on what he hates and what he loves, for any reason.
I am thankful because this God is just, reliable, trustworthy, and dependable, powerful enough and willing to protect us from harm and avenge us of wrongs.
I am also thankful this God looked down on a world that hates him for all of the above things that I would praise him for, saw that this world was full of everything that he hates, saw that we were hopelessly unable to ever measure up to his standards, all of us condemned to die and that our spirits, though designed to dwell in a body of flesh and to be in his presence, would be left disembodied and spiritually separated from his presence for all eternity.
I am thankful that this god so loathed by the world, so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son to pay the penalty of our sin and die in our place, so that we could be washed clean of our sin and purified in his blood. I am thankful he sent his Holy Spirit to dwell in us, so we can learn to walk in his way rather than continue to follow after the corruption of the mortal flesh we will trade one fine day for new, immortal, sinless and flawless bodies worthy to be with Him.
I am thankful that my God is both simultaneously a Just, Jealous, Holy, Unwavering, Unmovable, Unshakable, Authoritarian King of Kings and a Loving, Merciful, Good, Gracious, Patient, Gentle, Humble Savior and Redeemer.
I am thankful that the power of sin has already been defeated on the Cross and that it is only a matter of time before this long cosmic war is over and the last battle fought. I am thankful that, by grace, through faith alone, I can stand with the Creator of the Universe in the battle against sin and overcome rather than rebel, wallow in sin, and find myself cast out with the Lawless One. I am thankful that God has begun a good work of eradicating sin and imperfection in me and that he will continue to carry out his work in me until the day of His Coming.
I am thankful even us rebels who have betrayed our Heavenly citizenship again and again, going the way of the enemy culture all around us, can always humbly bow our knees to the King of Kings and be reconciled to him and forgiven.