So when the thanksgiving celebration is over and the turkey is gone and the meal has been devoured are the hearts still thankful ~ or not? Do we still persevere and run the race in thankfulness or have we somewhere along the way picked up negative vibes of other stuff to slow us down, and push our gratefulness to the back burner? Pushed it to some out-of-sight, remote corner of our world where it’s dark and dismal? A place where anxious worry and fears, oh so real fears, tug at us from all the far corners of the earth and overpower our clear thinking? What is it that won’t let go of the mind so that you can find the peace you desire, and need? Yeah, we all have the moments when we forget to be thankful for the small stuff because anxiety trumps (no pun intended) our thankful spirit! Worry takes over life and we begin living in nooks and crannies of despair simply because it all seems so hopeless. There’s a whole bunch of us living there, in the crowded corners of fear, wondering our next move and what it should be! There’s no empty space! No clear way! No direct path out and so what’s one to do as a prisoner in your own body?
Beautiful you ~ Track back to that corner of gratefulness, wherever you left it and find the blessing in the bleak! Track back to the good and yeah, even the not so good and find the golden threads of promise that have held you together this long. Untie them! Unravel them and take a good, long look at what you hold in your hand. Promises of God? His love, His guidance, His faithfulness, His Blessings? Yeah, so many, some mixed in with hurts and disappointment because life is life but things that God used to make you who you are today. He doesn’t waste pain! He uses every trace of it to strengthen our weakness and pull us out and up from where we are to where we can be. He still cares and that’s reason to offer praise from even a hurting heart! An offering of praise to our creator is the best antidote for anxiety. David lamented while hiding in a cave, fearing for his life, and writes his heart felt prayer in Psalm 142: 5, “I cry to your O Lord; I say ‘You are my refuge, my portion in the land of the living.” Listen to my cry, for I am in desperate need; rescue me from those who pursue me, for they are too strong for me. Set me free from my prison that I may praise Your name.” and then He does just that in Psalm 145:1, “I will exalt You, my God the King;…great is the Lord and most worthy of praise.”
So yeah, today in that anxious corner find the blessing in the bleak and let praise pour out of your grateful heart to the One on the heavenly throne. The Sovereign One in charge and watch the fear dissipate and melt away from your mind! Enter into the land of the living once more and allow God to be your refuge and your portion!
Our Canadian Thanksgiving weekend is met with bleak news headlines and fb posts as I scroll through the pages. Wars and rumours of wars. Bombings before peace rallies and more deaths and more threats and more loss and more killings and more war and on and on it goes. It’s all so out of control and anything but stable in these precarious days of unknowns! And here it is Thanksgiving! How do we celebrate with thankful hearts? How do we praise God without guilt in these times of distress surrounding us? It’s easy to be thankful when we have safety and food and shelter and so much to be thankful for isn’t it? All that we have seems a little selfish doesn’t it? Seems a little off and out of whack for us in our land of plenty to be celebrating with feasts of turkey; stuffing our faces with food fit for kings when brothers and sisters are fighting for life itself and hiding from enemies to stay alive in their danger zones.
Out of hearts of compassion we can pray for the ruined and the people and lands and the hurting and the lost. We can rid ourselves of stubborn, selfish attitudes and realize that yes, we are blessed with a whole heap of good stuff and yes beyond measure too! We have so much and yet we complain when we don’t get what we want or when it gets tough and we meet with hardships and bumps in the road. Let’s remember dear ones, to be thankful to a Sovereign, all seeing, all knowing God who loves the world but hates the sin that brings the death. Let’s be thankful for His provision of salvation to a lost and dying world and let’s bring those in danger, fleeing for their lives, and struggling to survive before the Lord, every time we feel blessed of God and yeah for every complaint of ours, catch it off guard and stop it it’s tracks long enough to pray for those less fortunate in lands and countries of pain and not so plenty! God cares for them too and sees their hurt and knows their pain. Let’s make Thanksgiving truly count and yeah ~ be thankful for our stuff but let’s truly catch His vision for the hurting and the ruined and the lost this Thanksgiving! Intercede for them! Lift them up to His throne of grace as He brings them into your heart and into your beautiful soul.
“The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.”
“The LORD is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.”
“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.”
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(¯`✻´¯) Thanksgiving Blessings<3 ❤ ❤
So ~ there’s more to this thankful heart bit than just saying “Thank you” for a gift that we don’t deserve or for the meal that we’re about to enjoy! We live in a land of plenty with so much to be thankful for but a grateful heart has to go beyond the blessing of the good all the way to the nitty-gritty of the not so good! All the way to the hard times ~ the difficult times, and the just plain, old, bad times. It’s a piece a cake and totally easy street to be so utterly happy and thankful when all is right with the world and the car works, the kids behave and the money’s enough and more. When the food’s plentiful, bills are paid, firewood is gathered and the house is warm. Yeah, relationships are healthy and all our warm fuzzies surround us in our cozy, little worlds of plenty! Yeah! Thanks is easy stuff there, but oh beautiful soul….it has to go deeper! It has to go down to where life’s reality finds us all too often; into the thick of the serious stuff, where living is hard and tough situations become difficult burdens; where the rubber meets the road and into where the going gets tough and the joy is ~ well ~ truth is, it’s up and left you high and dry! After all no good thing can come from whatever it is that has come a calling!
Paul knew that place of serious life and he reminds us from his prison cell, in Philippines 4: 10 – 12, that even in his incredible loss it was still all okay.
“But I rejoiced in the Lord greatly, that now at last you have revived your concern for me; indeed, you were concerned before, but you lacked opportunity. Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.…Paul knew the joy of the Lord and He lived it through the good and bad.
So ~ beautiful you, your blessings are more than “All is well,” and more than good times. They present beautifully in the bad too! Sweet blessings hide in the prisons of ill-health, bad news, financial crisis and extensive loss. Yeah, they do! A grateful heart will find them, and in a more profound and deeper way than what meets the eye on our dark days of compromised vision. So be thankful even for those! Remember with Paul, the tight spots and deep hurdles are truly God's way of loving on us, where He meets our difficulty with divine compassion and our "out of control" situations with hope. You can trust Him! You can rejoice in Him, the source of your joy, 'cuz when everything is wrong, He'll make it right and bless you through it. He's got it all for you and you can know it. You can rejoice in Him your Maker, and that, beautiful one, is awesome reason enough to be thankful
even through the storm.
"And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work."
2 Corinthians 9:8
"Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, "Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you."
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•°•.•*~*.✿ I WiSh YoU ✿.*~*.•°•.•
….…(¯`* a BeAuTiFuL DaY *´¯).
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Romans 8: 28
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
Is there anything more encouraging or more hope filled that the realization that all things are held together in God’s sovereignty? All things are allowed by Him for our purpose? Those disappointments are His appointments and those failures and pain, when turned over to Him, in repentance, are sifted, recycled and woven into golden threads for His glory, our benefit and the encouragement of others. What a brilliant creator and an awesome, divinely skilled, master craftsman we have in our God!! He creates, He sustains, He maintains! He saves, He keeps and He satisfies. He sits on the throne of glory conducting our lives, guiding, directing and protecting. He never sleeps neither does He slumber! He is our Rock of Salvation, our Fortress, our Great Physician, our Tower Of Refuge, our Bread Of Life and our Living Water. He’s is Grace, Mercy and our Hope of Glory! Without Him we are nothing. He works behind the scenes of our lives to blend, mold, refine, filter and fashion all the details together for our fullness of life. That’s what He does! I love how He does it!! Regardless of your situation or your circumstances, He is at work for you! Thank Him today from a grateful heart for working it out.
Be Blessed today