Tag Archives: thanks

O, Give Thanks

Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good!

For His mercy endures forever. 

1 Chronicles 16:34 (NKJV)

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My screensaver has this verse sprawled across the top with falling leaves blurred in the background. It is the season of Thanksgiving with the holiday less than a week away.

Reasons for giving thanks in year 2016:

  • The election is over
  • Family is all back in California
  • Vision is stable
  • Grandgirlies are happy in school
  • New church with new opportunities
  • Everyone has a job
  • Mark and Parker are taking it one day at a time

Our pastor often noted in his Thanksgiving sermon that he was thankful for his bed, his car, and his dog, good food, and clothes to wear — so many things we take for granted. In a world of war and confusion, the everyday creature comforts become expected. But just ask a Christian family fleeing from Mosul, having to leave everything behind, what they are thankful for.

Yet, I think the one thing I am most thankful for is hope. For without hope, why even try? Why go to work? Why study for that test? Why take those medicines or go to physical therapy? Why make time to visit that friend in the hospital? Why care about the outcome of that election? Why look for anything different in those hard areas of life?

Because, there is someone and something greater than ourselves who gives us hope and ultimately an eternal home. Christ defeated Satan at his own game because death is not the end — it is only the beginning. His resurrection put the final nail in Satan’s coffin regarding our future.

Fretting and worrying about tomorrow only takes away our joy and peace. God knows what’s next on His calendar and ours. Our job is to trust Him and do the tasks each day that He calls us to do.

Take time to say thank you to those who cross your path. Lift thanks to God for His many blessings each day. A heart of gratitude changes our outlook and makes our heart happy, and this is a perfect week to practice.

That is our hope.

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Give Thanks

In every situation [no matter what the circumstances] be thankful and continually give thanks to God; for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 (AMP)02a2c1101775ac03e45df4dea4788910

It is quiet. Not the normal quiet of my early morning latte and devotions. Not the quiet felt before the storm. Quiet.

There is no turkey in the refrigerator, no cans stacked on the counter, no tantalizing aromas, no company in the guest room. There are no fresh mums on the table, however, the house has been decorated for Fall since September. There are no lists of to-do’s and when to-do. Why? Because we are going out to dinner with friends tomorrow. It has been that kind of year.

Quiet.

Yet, it gives me time and space to think about this last year and all that God has done for me.

It was not an easy year. Two cataract surgeries, one hand surgery, and multiple shots in my eyes.

No exotic trips to far-off places (not sure I would want to go there right now, anyway). But trips to see littles and have grandgirlies’ visit are all that I needed.

The older I get, the more I appreciate people over things.

God has given me many blessings this year:

  • A husband who loves me, encourages me, helps me
  • Children who love me, love each other, love their spouses, and love God
  • A renewed and warm relationship with my daughter-in-law
  • The lights of my life—five grandgirlies—who bring me such joy
  • My dear prayer partner who listens to my heart and prays for me and I for her
  • Enduring  and encouraging friendships with women all over the US
  • Mentoring precious moms in MOPS
  • Celebrating my 50th High School Reunion (I can’t be that old!)
  • Good vision rather than looking at life through wax paper
  • Digital technology which allowed me to read my Bible, books, blogs, news with my iPad
  • The glory and grandeur of the Grand Canyon including a fun train ride
  • Enjoying the sights, sounds, tastes, and beauty of Tucson through the eyes of my grandgirlies
  • Medical technology to paste me back together
  • A home and wonderful neighbors in the gorgeous setting of the Catalina Mountains
  • A church family that has experienced many changes but remains true to God’s Word and a light in this dark world
  • And so many more than I can possibly remember…

Yes, in everything…give thanks.

GRACE has been my word this year. Jesus has given me so much more than I deserve and to Him be all praise and glory. Thank you.

 

 

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The Cup

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.James 1:17 (NIV)

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  We live out in the boonies and as a result, I do a lot of online ordering, often using catalogs to find interesting items. Last April I ordered a cup from a company that I have admired for a long time. It was one of the purchases that I really didn’t need and was usually more than I wanted to spend but it was on sale. Incentive, right? After a couple of weeks, I received notice that the item was backordered and given a new Ship Date, 30 days later. I was in no hurry so I let it go.

However, each month I received the same notification pushing off the delivery date for another 30 days. The company was very good about sending me notices that I could cancel at any time but I continued to wait for my cup. Finally, earlier this month, one more email arrived and I decided I didn’t really need this cup. I replied that I was tired of waiting and to please cancel the order. They responded affirmatively.

Yesterday a box arrived from the company and my immediate reaction was, “Oh no, they have sent this to me and didn’t get my cancellation.” The box was heavily packaged and after digging through, I found a beautiful box, tied in with a ribbon, a card slipped under the bow. The card read, ” We are sorry you had to wait. Please accept this at NO CHARGE with our apologies. Customer Service.” Delighted, I began to open a box that had been carefully packed and found my beautiful cup.

It occurred to me that this company could have wrapped the cup in bubble wrap, stuffed it in a box of styrofoam peanuts and included a note on the bill. But, no, they sent it wrapped as if it was going to their prize customer.

Our Heavenly Father does the same thing for His beloved children. We may have a special request that we ask…and ask…and ask. We have a couple of options. We can choose to wait patiently, we can change the request, or we can forget it. I know that God does not want us to forget it because He already knows our heart. But He may be changing our focus. He may know what’s ahead that needs to happen first. He may be saying, “No.” The one thing I know is that He is not ignoring us or just making us wait because He can.

The lovely thing about God, is that He brings the answer at just the right time, often when we least expect it but really need it. Rather like the cup. It lifted my spirits when I needed a boost. God’s love is just like that. He knows exactly what we need, when we need it and loves to give gifts to His children.

Take a moment to thank Him for all the gifts that He showers on you — even when you may have given up.

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Week of Fun

Every time I think of you, I give thanks to my God.

Philippians 1:3 (NLT)

Early morning hugs, golf cart rides to see the “jackbunnies” and javelina, craft day with Miss Jan, back flips into the pool, peanut butter cookie baking lesson, making bead bracelets, delivering neighborhood newspapers, reading the next chapter of Ramona’s kindergarten adventure with everyone in jammies on the bed. Yes, it was a full and busy week…but so much fun for all of us. My prayer is that these memories will last for a lifetime in the hearts and minds of my grandgirlies. I’m not sure when we will do this again but all of us look forward to another visit. I knew all had gone well when they announced they didn’t want to go home.

My grandparents were so important to me. My mother and I even lived with them for a year when my dad was overseas during the war. As a young girl, I knew that I could count on their unconditional love and acceptance. And my heart still aches for the Nana who was taken to heaven, much too soon for her 10-year-old granddaughter. I missed her sharing in the milestones of my life. Now it is my turn and I love being a grandmother. The best part is that you get to love and love and love without all the responsibilities. Yes, thank you, God, for my sweet girlies. They make me smile.

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