So Many Whatsoever’s!

After sharing our family’s prayer request for our daughter-in-law Melinda yesterday I was overwhelmed with people offering encouragement and prayers. Thank you for the verses, songs, and personal insights. I thought I would share a blessing of how they are facing the situation.

Yesterday, instead of staying home and moping, they took advantage of a rare warm November day to head over to Melinda’s favorite hangout – The miniature Horse farm in Strassburg. We all love the place where you can feed miniature horses, llamas, goats and chickens. Then there are the whoopie pies, home-made apple butter and lots of Amish handcrafts in their store. It reminded me of the verse that the Apostle Paul wrote while sitting in prison. He didn’t say, “Woe is me! The Romans are corrupt, please get me out of here!” Instead he encouraged his friends to be grateful for every good thing -no matter how small.

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
Philippians 4:8 KJV

It makes me ask myself, “How thankful have I been today for every detail of the blessing of life that God has granted me. In fact remembering and celebrating the good in spite of the bad is even what Jesus told us to do every time we receive communion. It is all part of His plan and at the end is joy in His presence and peace beyond anything we will ever understand!

A Thousand Thank You’s

 I thank my God always when I remember you in my prayers. Philemon 4

Thankfulness is a lesson I am still in the process of learning. Maybe, like Martha, I am overburdened with the pots and pans of life clanging in my ears, that I too easily pass by the quieter people who are nearest and dearest. It is far too easy to dash ahead to the next goal, the next project or chore, and to simply flick on the television and relax at day’s end without a moment to say thank you. So, this morning, before I rush out the door, let me say “Thank you!” and “God bless!” to the 1,000 people who for one reason or another have followed this blog. We are on a journey together, following the footsteps of the one who gave thanks and blessed the bread and the cup that He passed around the table to us. When we eat the bread and drink that cup together, we remember His death until He comes. Let’s begin this new day and new week to be thankful for those He has placed in our lives and treat one another with grace, respect for our differences and kindness.

Photo by George Dolgikh @ Giftpundits.com on Pexels.com

Giving Thanks Together

In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. KJV

I heard a snap, then the handle gave way and the bucket of rocks and shells I was carrying zeroed in on my big toe. The sharp pain in my foot and the first signs of blood told me this was going to be a game changer. As I quickly limped into the house calling out to my wife for help, I was definitely not thanking God. After she drove as fast as she could to the hospital, the only humorous moment came while I sat bent over in the wheelchair holding my foot as the security guard searched me for weapons at the door!

Photo by Marcus Aurelius on Pexels.com

Thankfully, the x-rays revealed nothing was broken but one thing was certain; like it or not, my plans were going to change. As we road home that night, rather than complain, my wife began to slowly list all the things we should be thankful for. First, we had insurance to pay for the emergency room, second, we I had received wonderful care from the health aide who washed the wound, the nurse who joked with me while she gave a tetanus shot and the doctor who gently encouraged me that my injury should heal with no complications. Compared to our daughter-in-law’s cancer or our grandchild’s kidney failure my problem was infinitesimally small, but the lesson was huge. Thankfulness is not something we always do alone. Even Paul had Silas with him when they sang praises in jail. Few of us in the middle of pain, grief or loss have the ability to honestly say “Thank you Jesus! I’m so happy right now!”. There are times when the best thing we can do is to lean on one another as together we learn to give God praise.