New Castle News

November 22, 2012

Tim Kolodziej: So very thankful on Thanksgiving Day

Tim Kolodziej
New Castle News

NEW CASTLE — I used to think I had to achieve my identity.

And it showed.

I was exhausted. After all, it’s tiring to chase after every shiny object I thought would make my life more meaningful.

I was fearful. Who wants to lose what you’ve worked so hard to gain?

I was frustrated. I would get what I wanted, only to find that nothing seemed to change.

But I have changed.

Better yet, I have been changed.

I just forget sometimes. Maybe you do, too.

I need to stop listening to all the competing voices and just tell myself, moment-by-moment and day-by-day, that we who call ourselves Christians no longer need to achieve our identity.

Instead, we simply receive it.

It’s a gift.

And I am eternally grateful.

So, what better day than Thanksgiving to share what I’m learning with those in reading distance of this blog.

This list isn’t comprehensive — I can’t even begin to count all my blessings — but it’s a start.

•I am so thankful ... that I have a new identity in Christ.

I’m not what my job says I am. I’m not who my detractors say I am. I’m not even the slug that I often tell myself that I am.

Instead: I’m who 2 Corinthians 5:17 says that I am. I belong to a different race of people.

•I am so thankful ... that I am “not guilty” in Christ.

I don’t need to carry the burden of my past offenses around like a refrigerator on my back.

Instead: I’m who Romans 8:1-2 says that I am. No need to dredge up the past.

•I am so thankful ... I am gifted to do good works in Christ.

OK, I’m not a doctor. I’m not a lawyer. Or an engineer. Or an Army general or a professional sports coach or a billionaire. That used to bother me.

Instead: I am who Ephesians 2:10 says I am. And I love it.

•I am so thankful ... that I am courageous in Christ.

What will people say? What will people think? How can I possibly make this decision that’s sure to make some folks angry?

Instead: I am who 2 Timothy 1:7 says that I am. And I can do all things through Him.

•I am so thankful ... I have the mind of Christ.

I’m not Einstein. I’m not Stephen Hawking. Or C.S. Lewis.

Instead: I’m who 1 Corinthians 2:16 says that I am. I’ve been gifted with wisdom for just the right person at just the right time.

•I am so thankful ... that my security is in Christ.

It’s not about “my candidate” in the Oval Office. It’s not about my next big deal. It’s not about me working for a “good company.”

Instead: I’m who Philippians 4:19 says that I am. He meets all my needs.

•I am so thankful ... that my future is in Christ.

It’s not about my 401K. It’s not about my investments, my safe deposit box or my retirement plan.

Instead: I’m who Romans 8:16-17 says that I am. My name’s in the will.

•I am so thankful ... that when I forget all of these things — and I often do — He is always there to remind me.

I’ve been made new.

I am forgiven.

I am loved.

I am secure.

I am wise.

I am courageous.

And I have a future that I can’t even begin to imagine.

So can you. Look it up and see for yourself.

(You on Twitter? Please follow me at Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!)