Thankful for God’s Grace

Josh Buice

Thanksgiving-Day-Meal

Today, as we gather around a table of thanksgiving, we all have many blessings for which we can give thanks to our God. As we look back on our lives on this Thanksgiving Day, we can see glimpses of God’s grace that has changed us as individuals and shaped our family life as a whole. For me personally, as I reflect upon my life, I am thankful for how God’s grace changed my family.

As we look back on our lives on this Thanksgiving Day, we can see glimpses of God’s grace that has changed us as individuals and shaped our family life as a whole.

Growing up in a broken home, I can honestly say that I cannot remember a single time where I celebrated Thanksgiving, a birthday, or any other holiday together as an entire family. My earliest memories of life involve divorce, confusion, bitterness, resentment, remarriage, abuse, and more divorce. Needless to say, I can never recall having my whole family around a table for Thanksgiving. From my earliest memories through my early adult life, our time together (if we were all in the same room) involved a certain amount of tension.

Thankful for God’s Grace in My Grandfathers’ Lives

Never underestimate the importance of a grandfather who walks with the Lord faithfully. Unfortunately, I never met my paternal grandfather. He died when my father was a little boy. He was a bivocational preacher who was working a job at a factory to provide for his family when he was involved in an accident that occurred on the job that took his life. He was a preacher and I’ve inherited some of his books and I’ve learned to greatly appreciate his legacy.

Never underestimate the importance of a grandfather who walks with the Lord faithfully.

Looking back to those moments of darkness as a little boy my maternal grandfather would pick me up for church every Sunday for church. That was where I first remember hearing the gospel explained. That was also where I first remember being challenged to memorize a Bible verse (I chose Genesis 1:1). However, because of the grace of God in my grandfather’s life, he understood the need for me to be attending church. So, he dropped by the little trailer where we lived and picked me up every Sunday. Today, I cherish those memories as I think about my grandfather who is now with the Lord.

Thankful for God’s Grace in my Family

As a young boy, I recall my father and step-mom taking us to Pray’s Mill Baptist Church (the church where I serve today as pastor). It was during those early years under the preaching of a faithful expositor that my father was converted. I can recall that our home changed a great deal after his conversion. He was a fireman who would seek to orient our home around the church and lead his family in family worship (we just called it family devotions at the time). I recall not enjoying it very much, but looking back, I’m so thankful for God’s grace in my father’s life.

Every church service matters, and it’s during those services that children are being evangelized and discipled by the power of God’s gospel.

The grace of God was shaping my family and I was benefiting from it. Every church service I was able to attend, every prayer over our supper table, and every family devotion was shaping me. Although I had made a profession of faith as a little boy when my grandfather took me to church on Sunday, it was not genuine. I can recall on several occasions through the years counseling with pastors on staff at our church because of the turmoil of my soul as I heard the gospel preached. Yet, it was often passed off as the devil seeking to rob me of my joy and create doubt in my mind. Every church service matters, and it’s during those services that children are being evangelized and discipled by the power of God’s gospel.

After graduating college and going to work for a printing company in Atlanta, I was sitting at my desk working on the computer as I heard the gospel preached over the Internet. It was for the very first time in my life that I understood I was lost and needed to be saved. I came to the sobering conclusion that I was an unconverted church member. By God’s grace, I was able to repent and believe the gospel and joy instantly flooded my soul.

After God confirmed a call to preach the gospel, I quit my job and moved with my wife Kari to Louisville, Kentucky where I attended seminary. At the conclusion of my first year of seminary, I came home for Christmas break to visit our family and I was invited to preach one Sunday evening at small country church. My mom was in attendance that Sunday evening and it was during that service where God’s grace was lavished upon my mom. Her life took a radical change from rebellion to complete submission to God.

In God’s strange providence, seven years later I was called home to pastor my home church. Today, my once broken family who could never be in the same room on a holiday can gather together for their grandchildren’s birthday celebrations and holiday meals. However, because of God’s grace in my family’s life, we can gather together on a weekly basis in the same room at Pray’s Mill Baptist where we worship the Lord in unity that’s only possible because of God’s grace. It’s joyful to be gathered together for a holiday meal or a birthday celebration, but it’s even more joyful to see God’s grace in the faces of my family as we gather for the Lord’s Supper on the Lord’s Day. What a testimony of the power of God’s amazing grace.

Today, as we sit together at a table of Thanksgiving, let us give thanks as we reflect upon God’s grace. Before you enjoy the meal together, take time to give a public testimony of God’s grace and remember, you might have unbelievers listening. Share God’s gospel and a testimony of God’s grace intentionally.

Colossians 3:15 – And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.

Author Thanksgiving-Day-Meal

Josh Buice

Pastor Pray's Mill Baptist Church

Josh Buice is the founder and president of G3 Ministries and serves as the pastor of Pray's Mill Baptist Church on the westside of Atlanta. He enjoys theology, preaching, church history, and has a firm commitment to the local church. He also enjoys many sports and the outdoors including long distance running and high country hunting. He has been writing on Delivered by Grace since he was in seminary and it has expanded with a large readership through the years.