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December 23, 2020 5:00 am
Pastor author and Bible teacher Alan writing is a simple step to say yes to his saving mercy and God in his infinite grace makes you his child and graft shoe into the body of Christ and you receive the covenantal blessings of God in Jesus Christ. That's pastor welcome to another message of good news that will help you see your life in a whole new light.
I'm Daniel Britton excited for you to hear the teaching today. In the series you'll see as presented in an older church in North Carolina. If you're not able to stay with us throughout the entire program I want to make sure you know how to get our special resource right now. It can be yours for your donation this month to Alan Wright Ministries as you listen to today's message go deeper as we send you today's special offer. Contact us at pastoralan.org that's pastor out in.org or call 877-544-4860 that's 877-544-4860. More on that later in the program but right now let's get started with today's teaching here is Alan writing all way comes into our lives through the connection of grace causing gratitude to well up in our heart's Ray Brown secular researcher at University of Houston is done so much research famously about shame and empathy has also studied joy and she said in 12 years of research with 11,000 different data points of interviews. She said that never one single time did she find a person who was characterized by joy in their life who did not practice gratitude, not a single time gratitude focuses you upon grace and grace is the secret of the Christians joy because we know that God has loved us despite all of our sin. So the first reason that gratitude is so powerful is that it recognizes grace and secondly because gratitude causes you to remember God in your life. That's what the Passover feast was all about. It was about remembering that's that that's what we learn from Exodus chapter 12.
This day shall be for you on Memorial Day and you shall keep it as a feast to the Lord throughout your generations as a statute forever. You shall keep it as a feast Memorial day and end and will in chapter 13. You can see similarly that there's an invitation. Moses said the people remember this day remember this day you shall keep it as a feast.
In other words, the whole of the Passover celebration was all about remembering. Remember remember commemorate it because what gratitude does is it makes you remember all God's good gifts. I was I was a look of them, I found some pictures the other day will particularly stressful day. A lot going on news continued to be bad all as were watching the news more cases of the virus in and all anyone has habitability was a pictures and I came upon what I just had to walk us and look at this weighty Cheryl my phone. It was a picture of us last summer when we had a delicious trip like a like a second honeymoon up through Vermont and into Canada all the way up to Québec city and from there we went up another 50 or hundred miles north to a port.
We got on a boat and went out and looked at whales and I had caught a picture of her at the front of the boat. Nobody else around her just looking out over this beautiful beautiful scene where we had seen fin whales 60 feet long and white beluga whales and is been one of most magical days in which is her gazing out is it Hun just pause and look you not feeling how a memory can just glide your whole soul with not just the recollection of it, but it's like you relive it when you have gratitude in your life you remember all of goods get God's good gifts and has put together a book she just calls it her book of remembrance. Sometimes when you send us a text or an email or letter and you tell us about some God's done your life.
It shows up in Anne's book of remembrance. Miracles are in there and sometimes we just bring it out and just just remember and remember, gratitude is associated with how you remember your life and it orients you to reality because the fact of the matter is, God has always been there for you.
You might not have noticed it all the time and sometimes today's current pain-and-suffering can make you think that he's not really there. But when you remember God, it activates some kind of faith inside of you remember David he was trying to convince Saul to let him go fight Goliath and Goliath and and salsa, but you're just a youth in David David and for single 17th.
He said to Saul, your servant used to keep the sheep for his father and when there came a lion or a bear and took a lamb from the flock. I went after him and struck him and deliver it out of his mouth, and if he arose against me. I called him by his beard and struck him and killed him. Your servant struck down both lions and bears, and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be like one of them, for he has defied the armies of the living God. In other words you say and I remember how God's been in my life before and so I know he'll be with me now so gratitude is powerful because you recognize and accentuate grace. Every time you give thanks and you you activate your memory of God's goodness in your life. And thirdly, gratitude is powerful because it rejoices in all that is good.
Everything good in the middle of the Passover feast. There are songs that the families will sing together and one of the favorites is a song called dying you and it comes from the Hebrew word Diane you that means enough or it is enough and it's a happy little song died. Diane, you died. Diane, you died. Diane you Diane you Diane you a little chorus and then it has like 14 different verses in each one is saying if God had only done this piece of it. It would've been enough. I is such a happy thought to think of if he brought here. The lyrics he brought us out for each other and had not carried out judgments against them.
Diane you it would have been enough. If he had carried out judgments against them and not against their idols. Diane you, it would've been enough. If you destroyed their idols and are not smitten their firstborn Diane you, it would've been enough if you'd smitten the firstborn and not given us their wealth. It would have been, and if he had given us their wealth and not split the C4 as Diane knew it would've been enough if he had if you'd split the sea for us and not taken us through on all dryland Diane you, it would've been enough.
If you take it is through the sea on dry land and not drowned out our oppressors and it Diane you, it would've been enough. If you drowned our oppressors and I do not supply our needs in the desert for 40 years. Diane you it would have been enough.
If you supplied our needs in the desert for 40 years, and not that is the manna Diane knew it would've been enough if he had said as the man I had not given us a Shabbat, the Sabbath day and you it would have been enough. If you given us the Shabbat and and not brought us before Mount Sinai. Diane you it would have been enough if he brought us before Mount Sinai and not given us the Torah.
Diane you it would have been enough. If you given us a tour and a not brought us into the land of Israel.
Diane you it would have been enough. Diane you Diane knew Diane you got it just saved us from our sin so that we get to go and live with him forever in heaven that would've been enough enough to give him thanks for the rest of our lives, but he didn't just give you a ticket to heaven. He also restored us.
He made us new gave us new life. We are born again in Christ we have been remade, restored and given authority again in the spirit realm that we once had. If he had just given us restoration. It would've been enough, but he didn't just do that. He not only made us children who been restored into fellowship with him and raining and authority in the spiritual realm, but he made as a heirs, he made us a people that have a rich inheritance in front of us that we didn't merit and if he just made us heirs that would've been enough, but he didn't just make us heirs. They made us coheirs with Christ and and is coheirs with Christ a great exchange took place and he knew our knew no sin became our sin that we might become as righteous a mess and and in this great exchange.
What happened was the blessings that should've been reserved for Jesus were shared with every Christian so that Paul said we been blessed with every spiritual blessing in Christ where coheirs with Christ, and were seated with Christ and if he had just seen it with us with Christ is coheirs would've been more than enough. But he didn't just do that. He made us into the body of Christ on earth and gazing every member of it. Gifts.
Gifts of the Holy Spirit so that we would continue the ministry of Jesus until he comes again. And if that weren't enough, he's going to come and make a new heaven and a new earth, and we will reign with him forever and ever. And the new heaven and the new earth is what happens when you have the sense of Diane you is that God makes your heart content because you are recognizing everything good in your life challenge right will have more teaching moment from today's important series want to give someone a present this Christmas that they'll never forget. Let us help you give a gift, that money can't buy this Christmas.
Give someone your blessing a positive biblically-based faith filled vision for their life in the beginning God blessed Adam and Eve and then told them to be fruitful and multiply, because in God's design blessing isn't the reward for productivity.
It's the fuel for it. Now more than ever, someone you love needs your blessing and we're here to help you craft this month. Special offer from Alan Wright is a beautiful booklet that will teach you how to craft an full blessing for easy step-by-step instructions are biblically based, and even include a worksheet that helps you write your blessing.
So this Christmas. Give someone you love a present, not found in stores, a gift from your own heart that will encourage and empower write down the blessing and put it in the package under the tree or put it in your Christmas card bill. Never forget it when you make your gift Alan Wright Ministries this month will send you this booklet is our thinking so you can discover the power to bless call us at 877-544-4860 or visit pastor and.org these teaching now continues your once again is Alan Ryan I think I may have told you before some years ago a dear friend of former parishioner in the church I served many years ago in Durham, North Carolina. It will suddenly lost his wife to a heart attack. She died in her 70s and I went to the funeral and I went to embrace Roy at the and he and I said how are your Roy and he said I'm sad and I'm grieving. He said, but I'm not better and I don't feel slighted as I could never feel cheated out of anything because we had 40 some years of marriage together and wonderful Alan. He said what we've had and how good God's been to us and our two children. All of that. I am just so grateful so I'm grieving but I'm grateful as I grieve.
In other words, gratitude enables your soul to rest. It is the secret of contentment when it seems like you're losing so much. How can you be content in the midst of it gratitude. The focus of gratitude on the good gifts of God rejoicing in all of those good gifts. I'm not sure which is my favorite Christmas special is it Charlie Brown or is it the Grinch who stole Christmas.
I think it might be the Grinch because I love it.
At the end whether Grinch has stolen every present every ornament.
The tree in the center of town and the crumbs that were too small for their mouses and he just waits to hear all about who's down and Hooverville cry out boo-hoo on Christmas morning he just knows it is going to be a terrible thing in the Grinch is there listening and he hears every who down in Hooverville the Paul and the small there down there singing without any presence at all and he realized he had not stopped Christmas from coming and somehow or other, he realizes that Christmas is something more. He stood there, he says, how could it be so. And I love the lives it came without ribbons. It came without tags. It came without packages boxes or bags and whose are just there, singing happily with no presence. Gratitude causes rest of our souls because there's always something that you can be thankful for. Always that's why Jesus even though he was about to experience the most horrendous day and 1/2. Imaginable he was grateful he took the cup, and he said the cup of a new covenant, so his heart was thankful because he knew in advance.
All that he was accomplishing through his death and resurrection.
He was so thankful that the father, with whom he had perfect oneness of been utterly faithful in his ministry. And Jesus was announcing a new covenant, not like the old that was based on law.
The people of God, agreeing to follow God's law. This is a new covenant it. It wasn't about your obedience was about my obedience. It was a covenant between the father and the son and the son had been obedient, perfectly obedient, even obedient unto the cross and he had one for us through his own righteousness covenantal blessings that we only received by being in the new covenant by being children of God by just trusting in Christ. If you've yet to trust in Christ is a simple step to say yes to his saving mercy and God in his infinite grace makes you his child and graphs you into the body of Christ and you receive the covenantal blessings of God in Jesus Christ that that's what were ultimately thankful for people of God is not so much. Thank you that I had this financial provision, but thank you that I'm in a covenant and you are my father and you have pledged protection and provision in my life as it is a big difference between thank you for helping me in this particular need, which is a blessing versus saying thank you that I am inseparably connected to you God because of the initial work of Jesus in a new covenant that he is founded. That is changed everything about who I am. In other words, our Thanksgiving is deepest when we are mindful of the covenant that God has made for us in Jesus Christ. That is a new covenant, born of his shed blood dear child of God and all the blessings that you didn't deserve are therefore yours. There is our theirs, our coven then told Joy it's it's a new identity was 1952 cold nights and side hundred yards inside of enemy lines in North Korea snow was falling on the tumor ends Marines that were best friends.
They were preparing to crawl across and look for a mind sweep them so that their fellow soldiers. The next morning could make their way these two best friends Richard Manning and Ray Brennan inside the bunker and they were passing a candy bar back and forth between the two of them when suddenly a grenade was lobbed in by an undetected North Korean and what Richard Manning said happened was very simple that nonchalantly Ray Brennan handed him the candy and sell onto the grenade, which instantly exploded with Ray Brennan storming stomach absorbing all of the blow since Richard Manning was completely unharmed. His best friend died for eight years later Richard Manning is becoming Franciscan priest tradition had always had it for years and years that the Franciscan priest would change his name to the name of a saint, but they just inaugurated a change that would allow the priest candidate to choose his own new name and so that's how Richard Manning became Brennan Manning well-known author teacher now in heaven. He took the name of the man who died for him because that's what gratitude does. Once you have a gratitude that deep you just are identified by, and that's what it means to be a Christ one that's what it means to be a Christian. It means we have the name of Christ, because we live every single day grateful that he died in our place. I hope I don't have any more dreams about running around trying to finalize a final exam. I'm not in college anymore, and fact the more that I practice gratitude, the more my heart focuses in on grace and remembers God in my life and rejoices in every good thing he's done. I think the more peace settles into our hearts, don't you every single day in the midst of such global uncertainties that we've never seen in our lifetime.
The invitation of the gospel is to remember Jesus Christ remember what he's done for you.
Remember the sacrifice he made for you and every single day.
Beloved. There's something for which you can be grateful. There is always always always something you can do anything more, and that the gospel Alan Wright.
Today's good news message gratitude in the grave from the series you'll see past real in his back with us here in the studio. In a few moments with today's parting good news though want to give someone a present this Christmas that they'll never forget.
Let us help you give a gift, that money can't buy this Christmas. Give someone your blessing a positive biblically-based faith filled vision for their life in the beginning God blessed Adam and Eve and then told them to be fruitful and multiply, because in God's design blessing isn't the reward for productivity. It's the fuel for it. Now more than ever, someone you love needs your blessing and we're here to help you craft this month.
Special offer from Alan Wright is a beautiful booklet that will teach you how to craft an full blessing for easy step-by-step instructions are biblically based, and even include a worksheet that helps you write your blessing.
So this Christmas. Give someone you love a present, not found in stores, a gift from your own heart that will encourage and empower write down the blessing and put it in the package under the tree or put it in your Christmas card. They'll never forget it when you make your gift Alan Wright Ministries this month will send you this booklet is our thank you so you can discover the power to bless call us at 877-544-4860 or visit pastor and.org back here in the studio sure investor Alan sporting good news thought for the day and on a teaching like this gratitude in the gray which was preached in the very early days of the 2020 pandemic which I think we were all thinking this would be just a few days or a few weeks of gray. And that certainly it certainly was hard in those times to find the gratitude. One thing was for certain, and we heard it over and over. We were tired of hearing. We were all in it together, experiencing that gray yeah gratitude all know what that means. Let's reiterate our key takeaways from this teaching gratitude is so powerful because it recognizes grace and remembers God numbers his faithfulness and rejoices in everything that is good. Recognizing grace all around you, remembering God remembering them in your life, remembering what is done and rejoicing and everything good that you can think up. This is what gratitude does and that's why gratitude leads to joy.
So if you want joy practice gratitude. If your practice gratitude asked Jesus to give you his vision and he will show you his faithfulness over and over, over and over again.
He has been faithful remember it well rehearse it well rejoice in it always, if you only caught part of today's teaching. Not only can you listen again online but also get a daily email devotional that matches today's teaching right to your email inbox free. Find out more about these and other resources, and pastor out how to work that's pastor out and.org. Today's good news message is a listener supported production Alan Wright Ministries