“ThanksLIVING: Grateful for what I Don’t Deserve”

ThanksLIVING: Making gratitude my lifestyle
Week 3: Grateful for What I Don’t Deserve!
 
Key Points:
ThanksLIVING is seeing the gift but focusing on the giver.
ThanksLIVING is liking to receive but loving to give.
ThanksLIVING is knowing my place but marveling at God’s grace.
 
Justice – getting the good or bad that I deserve
Mercy – not getting the bad I deserve
Grace – getting the good that I do not deserve

Bottom Line: Real healing happens to the degree that I don’t deserve but I’m blown away that I get it
 
Further Conversation
1. What is something you’ve worked really hard to gain? What is different about something you earn vs. a gift you’ve been given?
2. Read Luke 17:11-19. What made the one lepor turn come back to Jesus? What do you think happened to the other nine lepors?
3. How can what we think we deserve impact our thankfulness?
4. Read Luke 17:6-10 Why might it be hard for church people today to see themselves as “unworthy servants” simply doing our duty?
5. Read John 15:12-17 Compare this passage to Luke 17:6-10. How can we be unworthy servants and friends of Jesus?
6. How might you understand the difference between Justice, Mercy & Grace? When or how have you experienced each?
7. I know grace to the degree it blows me away. What do you think of this statement? In what ways has God’s grace impacted you? How could you grow to be more impacted by God’s Grace?

Daily Devotions: Go Deeper this Week
 
Monday – Mark 8:31-33
Spoiler Alert! Has anyone ever ruined a movie by telling you then end before you’ve had your opportunity to experience it? Knowing the end can remove us from appreciating the struggle of those in the midst of the story. Likewise, our familiarity with the resurrection can numb us to the fear and confusion the disciples experienced. Jesus’ followers simply couldn’t make sense of God’s plans. They were realistically afraid to hope in light of crucifixion. Are you in the midst of struggle, afraid to hope? Remember these disciples. Yes, they too feared and were confused. How can the resurrection give you hope now?
Pray: LORD Jesus, I know you rose from the dead. I believe I have hope in you. May fear not distract me or hold me back.
 
Tuesday – Genesis 50:19-21
Joseph couldn’t catch a break. He was sold into slavery by his brothers, unjustly prisoned for a crime he didn’t commit, and left behind for two years. Yet in every circumstance he hoped and stayed obedient to God. How? These last words in Genesis reveal his motivation. Joseph trusted God. Hope is trust. Trust can be scary in the midst of great disappointment. However, trust in God will always lead us to peace and joy. How are you responding to difficulty? Can you say, “Yes, but I know God will use it for good.”?
Pray: Holy LORD, I so often lament my circumstances. Help me trust in you and believe you will use all things for good!
 
Wednesday – Romans 8:31-39
Like Joseph, Paul reminds us how to trust. “If God is for us, who can stand against us?” That’s a great question. Not meant to cause us to be aggressive against others, but instead, this statement encourages us to remain faithful and obedient no matter what others do against us. What stands against you? Where has it been hard to believe that God is for you? How can these words in Romans encourage you?
Pray: My God and Savior, may I trust and rely on you. You conquered the grave and defeated death. You are my LORD!
 
Thursday – Proverbs 3:1-6
Have you ever tied a string around your finger to remind you of something? Today, we put reminders on our phones, write post-it notes and stick them around the house, or ask someone to remind us of important info. We can forget how God calls us to live. We need reminders. It is only when we trust in God, following Jesus, that our lives will be secure and true. What distractions often cause you to miss Jesus? What reminders can you set up to keep you close to Jesus?
Pray: Holy Spirit, it is so easy to forget. I get distracted by so many people and circumstances. Help me remember. Remind me of your love and calling on my life.
 
Friday – Psalm 147:7-11
God gives us reminders every moment of every day, if only we will see them. The beauty of God’s creation speaks to God’s glory and power. The grace and love between people remind us, if only dimly of God’s love and grace for us. We sing songs, study God’s word, and praise God’s name all to remind us who we worship. Fearing God is not to cower and run, but to marvel and praise. How can you increase your hope by praising God?
Pray: Heavenly Father, you have made yourself visible and known in so many ways. Help me see the beauty of your creation and marvel at your power. Help me praise your name today.
 
Saturday – 1 Peter 1:3-7
What if its all true? Stop and think about that a moment. What if God, the God of the Universe that spoke all things into being, really did become human, walk on the earth, die on the cross, and raise from the dead. What if faith in Jesus really meant joy in the midst of struggle and peace in chaos? What if heaven is for real? If its true, it changes everything! Reread these words from Peter. Hope boldly in Jesus today.
Pray: LORD of Heaven and Earth, you are God, my God, maker of Heaven and Earth. And through your son Jesus, I am saved and made new! I believe. I will trust. I am all yours.