Aaron's Thanksgiving Letter to God for 2023

 


Dear God,

Thank you for your great love for me, expressed by the gift of your Son who took the penalty I deserved for my sins. 

Thank you for all the problems, trials, and tribulations I've had in my life that have formed my character and turned me into the person I am today. Thank you that because of these trials and tribulations, I usually know what to do when I encounter new trials and tribulations and rarely if ever feel overwhelmed or discouraged anymore.

Thank you for my parents and my sister, my nuclear family, who did their best to help me grow up to be a happy, successful person. I know You appointed them for that purpose, and although I look back on some things I wish they'd done differently, I thank You that Your hand was on the process every step of the way and never allowed their mistakes and shortcomings, or my own, to cause me too much damage.

Thank you for my wife and children. When I think about all the mistakes and bad decisions I've made in my life, I am amazed that You still loved me enough to bring this marvelous woman into my life to be my wife and the mother of my children. Please help me to be a better husband and father, because the gift You have given me to be a husband and father are some of the greatest gifts anyone can receive.

I thank you for all my cousins and extended family around the world, especially my in-laws here in Israel. The older I get the more I realize that family connections are one of the most important things in life and worth every bit of effort I put into maintaining them.

I thank you for the congregation that I am able to attend every week for Shabbat meetings, prayer meetings, and Bible studies. Thank you for the tremendous investment this congregation is making into the lives of my children by providing so many activities for them to participate in. In a world that tries very hard to influence my children and shape their worldview, I'm grateful that I'm not alone in fighting for them.

For that matter, I want to thank you so much for all the other people in my congregation who regularly pray for my children and the other children in our community. This is so important, and I thank you for inspiring those who pray.

Thank you for the school where my children spend their days learning and growing. When I think of the hundreds of millions of children around the world who have no school to go to, including many who must work in dangerous and unpleasant jobs to earn the money they need for their daily food, I am very grateful that my children spend their days in such a place. I thank you that by going to school, my children are learning things that will make their future lives better.

I thank you that I live in a country where the government isn't perfect but at least it exists. When I think of the hundreds of millions of people around the world who live in "ungoverned spaces" where there's no law and order, no public services, and, in general, no way of knowing from one day to the next what one's situation will be, I am very grateful for what I have.

I thank you for my job, which allows me to earn the money I need to live while serving the plans and purposes of Your Kingdom. When I think of the hundreds of millions of people around the world who have no work and no income and the hundreds of millions of others who have a job that they hate going to and wish they could quit, I'm very grateful for what I have.

I thank you for all the stores where I can buy groceries and all the other things I need. The prices I have to pay in these stores are higher than I'd like them to be, but when I think of the hundreds of millions of people all over the world who have little or no access to the things they need on a daily basis and must spend most of their time fighting to simply stay alive, I'm very grateful for what I have.

I thank you for the Israel Defense Forces, the police, the firefighters, the medical response teams, the hospitals, the garbage collectors, the street sweepers, and countless other people who protect my family and otherwise take care of us in a million different ways. I'm sorry I sometimes forget to thank you for these people and the work they do.

On that subject, I thank you for allowing me to live in Jerusalem, the capital of Israel. This is a privilege that millions of Believers, both Jewish and Gentile, would like to have. I thank you that I was born in this generation, in which You have appointed the State of Israel to be back on the map after 2,000 years. Although there are many problems here and I look to a future when Your Son Yeshua has returned to this city to set up His government and all those problems will be gone, it's still a great place to live and I'm grateful to be here.

Thank you that I grew up in the United States of America in a golden age, the 1980s and 90s. I was so greatly blessed by all the wonderful things that I had access to in those years. I'm also grateful that You took me out of the US at exactly the right time and brought me to Israel where I've received many more blessings from Your hand.

I thank you for all the material possessions I have which make my life so comfortable and enjoyable. I'm sorry for having a bad attitude sometimes because there's something I want that I don't have. Please help me to remember that if I really needed it, You would give it to me, and since you haven't yet given something to me, I probably don't need it that badly.

Thanks for the food, God. That's a REALLY nice touch!

I thank you for the many other things that make my life so easy, pleasant and fulfilling. I'm sorry I don't thank You for them more often. Please help me to have a more grateful heart and for my thoughts to more often be directed to thinking about all my blessings and less often about all the things I'm not happy about.

Happy Thanksgiving Lord, and thank You for everything. Amen.

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