Thinking thankfully

Psalm 118:24-29: “This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will be glad and rejoice in it.

Save now, I beseech thee, O Lord: O Lord, I beseech thee, send now prosperity.

Blessed be he that cometh in the name of the Lord: we have blessed you out of the house of the Lord.

God is the Lord, which hath shewed us light: bind the sacrifice with cords, even unto the horns of the altar.

Thou art my God, and I will praise thee: thou art my God, I will exalt thee. O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good: for his mercy endureth forever.” 

Americans are all gearing up for Thanksgiving tomorrow, myself included, and as we all know this day was set aside for us to gather together and give thanks to God for what we have and most certainly who we have. I personally believe that the Pilgrims were keeping feast days.

But for the present time we can be thankful for the relentless persistence of a lady named Sara Hale who finally convinced President Lincoln to make it a national holiday. The first “recognized” Thanksgiving was November 26, 1863 and everyone eagerly embraced it.

Of course over time it has become more about the turkey and the next day shopping for the secular world and for all, especially in season of difficulty, it can be lonely and painful,and a time of mourning for those we no longer have.

And I understand that completely.

I know many, just in my circle who have lost mothers this past year, myself included again, and one beautiful sister who lost her Mom last December, who will be having her first Thanksgiving without her Mom, and for many of us the wounds are fresh.

I have a niece and nephew who lost BOTH Grandmothers two months apart and another family member who has been hospitalized for over thirty-five days and counting, fighting for her life, and her family fighting alongside her, absolutely exhausted. And I am NOT saying all that to be negative, I am saying that actually to be HOPEFUL.

We are never so reminded of those losses as we are during the holidays and it doesn’t matter if it has been two months or twenty years, the loss of a loved one or friend will ALWAYS hurt. But most still have so much to be thankful for.

God blesses us each and every day we wake up.

If you are healthy and live in safety today you ARE blessed. So many the world over and also here in America do not have food, they do not have a place to live or any where to sleep.

So many who live in fear and have no sense of safety or security for one day to the next and so many suffer with loneliness and abuse, depression and physical illness. But we all have something to be thankful for, even if we are hurt, devastated, lonely, or rejected.

We can be thankful for what we have and especially who we have today. And if not for “today”, we can be thankful for past experiences, memories and happier times and seasons in life.

Thankful for love, and joy that we have known. Thankful for the people and  friends, pets, and all the joys of yesteryear.

We can be thankful for the future, seasons change and rain doesn’t last forever.

Jeremiah 29:11: “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts OF peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end (a HOPE and a FUTURE).”

And the future in the future of eternity.

Revelation 21:1-4: “And I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away: and there was no more sea.

And I John saw the holy city new Jerusalem COMING DOWN from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

And I heard a great voice our of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God IS with men, and he WILL dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God HIMSELF shall  be with them, and be their God.

And GOD SHALL WIPE AWAY ALL TEARS FROM THEIR EYES; and there shall be NO more death, NEITHER sorrow, NOR crying, NEITHER shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.”

If we have even ONE thing to be thankful for and we all do, we can rejoice in even that one thing.

But don’t miss out on the others in your life, the ones who still live, every single day, ever single moment and second of those days are precious and once they are gone, those days will never be ours again.

Don’t miss out on opportunity to take what may feel like broken nothingness today and allow God to teach you how to use the brokenness you have endured yesterday or today to help someone else along the way tomorrow.

Don’t ever give up on the future he has promised you, that future of hope and most of all NEVER lose sight and hope of that eternal future. 

Be thankful for his enduring mercy, mercy he shows before we even know him because he has known us from before the foundations of the earth and it is by that mercy that we have not be destroyed, again yet another reason to be thankful.

Thankful for his never-ending, never expiring offer of salvation.

Thankful that the loss of our lives and those of our loved ones is precious and tender in his sight.

Psalm 116:12-18: “What shall I render unto the Lord for all his benefits toward me?

I WILL take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the Lord. I will pay my vows unto the lord in the presence of all his people.

Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.

O Lord, truly, I am thy servant, and the son of thine handmaiden, thou hast loosed my bonds. 

I WILL offer to thee the SACRIFICE OF THANKSGIVING, and I will call upon the name of the Lord.” 

Sometime we just need to think about thinking thankfully and we will find a thousand reasons to thank him for yesterday, today, and tomorrow, and the tomorrow that will never end. 

Love & peace till next time, and I want you all to know how truly thankful I am for you!

God bless you and I pray that you have a blessed Thanksgiving and if your sick that you will be healed, if you are lonely that God will comfort you, and if that if you are hurting I pray that God brings you into a season of rejoicing and peace.

Psalm 126:5,6: ” They that sow in tears shall reap in joy. He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again rejoicing, bring his sheaves with him.” 

Praying for those who have shed more that their share of tears this year, that your harvest of joy is coming soon.

Φλογιζω NBJ 2018

This is such a true song and it always reminds me of my late Aunt Evelyn, who always dedicated to me on a radio ministry.

 

Thanksgiving

Psalm 136:16-26: TO HIM which led his people THROUGH THE WILDERNESS: FOR HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER. TO HIM which smote great kings: FOR HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER: And slew famous kings: FOR HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER :  Sihon king of the Amorites: FOR HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER: And Og the king of Bashan: FOR HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER: And gave their land for an heritage  (the land of the wicked kings to the children of God): FOR HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER: Even an heritage unto Israel his servant:FOR HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER. Who remembered us in our low estate: FOR HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER: AND HATH REDEEMED US FROM OUR ENEMIES: FOR HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER. WHO GIVETH FOOD TO ALL FLESH: FOR HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER. O GIVE THANKS UNTO THE GOD OF HEAVEN: FOR HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER! 

The Thanks in Thanksgiving

When I think of the word thanksgiving, I tend to get the tune of “Old MacDonald’s”  in my head and wanna sing “With a gobble,-gobble, here and a gobble-gobble there….” , But since I lost out to my brother due to traditional gender based child naming and my Mom didn’t name me “Mack-Nina” it kinda takes the fun of out it anyway! But there is so much more than turkey and gravy, parades, and pumpkin pie to be had.

 I have given this a lot of thought. I have never written anything just for Thanksgiving. I have always wanted too but now that I have taken on the role of family Thanksgiving Dinner Hostess, it seems like time always just runs a little short with my long list of things to do. But I am so thankful for it. Every occasion to celebrate with our families is precious threads through time that will become irreplaceable memories and that is so important, especially as we grow older in life and realize just how precious those memories will become, because one day, they will be all that we have left of a season, a time, and often all that we have of a late loved one and memories become the tune played in our hearts until that great day when we will all feast together again, no more tears, no more heartache, and we will forever give thanks.

Growing up I always awoke on Thanksgiving morning to the unmistakable mouth watering smell of roasting turkey and the sounds of the televised Thanksgiving Day parade, I would drag myself into the kitchen to find my beautiful mother working on side dishes smiling and just happy with the joy of the day.

So beautiful, and such a blessed time in our history, in our world today we have so much cause for concern, ISIS and the terrorist groups and their constant threats, sickness, a horrible economy for many, my area devastated by the EPA’s “coal overthrow”, I can see it both ways, I have a friend who goes to every anti-coal protest she can find, but so many, my family included have suffered the effects of it and many friends still are forced to relocate to feed their families, it all sounds great for the environment but tell that to hungry children and worried parents. In other regions of our world everyday life for many is a struggle and each day brings true starvation for others. This year so many standing in prayer and unity for those in France and Mali, and the families of those who were executed because they could not quote a Quran verse and yet we dispute each other on social media as to whether or not to fly country colors as solidarity, and in America you are hated for flying a rebel flag but not for displaying a swastika, so messed up, because nationality, color, or the actions of a particular government that we have no control over does nothing to change one simple truth, we all are human, we were all created by the same God (even if we do not choose to serve Him), we all hurt, and we all cry and that is reason enough to put down all the bickering and pettiness and protests of what lives matter ( for the record, some police departments have long track records of brutality that I believe is not just racial, I am sure some of it is but there are mean people in all walks of life) we are still in the same world, facing the same uncertainty.

The one constant that will never change is the love of Jesus and HIS MERCY, and HIS MERCY ENDURES FOR EVER.

Psalm 136 1-9:  O Give THANKS unto the Lord; for HE IS GOOD: for HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER.

O Give THANKS unto THE GOD OF gods: for HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER.

O give THANKS unto the LORD OF LORDS; for HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER.

TO HIM who ALONE DOETH GREAT WONDERS: for HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER.

TO HIM that by wisdom MADE THE HEAVENS: for HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER.

TO HIM that STRECTED OUT THE EARTH ABOVE THE WATERS: for HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER.

TO HIM that MADE GREAT LIGHTS: for HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER.

The sun to rule by day; for HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER. The moon and stars to rule by night; HIS MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER.

As the day of thanks draws close, we cannot change what has already happened, we must not fear what may happen, these are things that none of us can control, but the one thing that we can control is our thoughts, God will keep US IN PERFECT PEACE ( peace of mind) when our minds are focused on him, when we give all our thoughts in thankfulness to Him for HIS mercy, and HIS loving kindness that WILL endure for ever and ever and that no one can take away.

εω Φλογιζω/ NBJ 2015