The land that God promised to Israel was a good one. It had plenty of everything for everyone, like our land. Yesterday, I felt a great sense of thankfulness to God for the many blessings he has laid at our feet here in America. We certainly do live in “a land of plenty, a land of beauty, and a land that we all can share,” as the Three Christi Minstrels used to sing. I’m enjoying these thoughts as we approach the thanksgiving season.

Chapter 9, verses 1 through 6 remind us, just as it did Israel, that the great blessings they have was given to them because of how righteous they were. Verse 6 says, “Understand that the Lord your God is not giving you this good land to possess because of your righteousness…” No indeed, in the following verses he goes on and reminds them “…for you are a stiff necked people.”  Then he tells them to remember the times they rebelled against Him and He reminds them of the specific events.

I’m a “stiff necked” person and you can verify that with my wife and sons. I could list many times I demonstrated that in all my relationships. But still I live in a land of plenty, a land of beauty, and land that we all can share. The truth of my past failures serves to increase the depth of my gratitude. We’re often told to forget the past and in many ways we must, but sometimes it’s good to remember the past and thank God for His grace to us in spite of it all.