Thoughts of a messed up Christian saved by God's grace

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

A month of thankfulness

  It is great that we have a day set aside to focus on being thankful, but it is sad if we only spend time being thankful one day of the year, or even one month. We should be thankful every day of the year, and have a spirit of thankfulness in our hearts 24/7.

 There have been other years that I blogged every day in November about one thing I am thankful for. This month has been hectic, and I haven't done that. Besides, I am not sure anyone would read a daily blog post like that, except God. (Does God even read blogs?) Anyway, I feel I should do that this year, but do it in one post. Since there are 30 days in November, below are 30 things I am thankful for, in no particular order of importance:

1) God....... His love, grace, mercy, forgiveness, and second chances.

2) Family. My family isn't perfect, but I am thankful for them. We get along well, are close, and always have a great time when we are together... and I am thankful we are all still here.

3) My nieces and nephews. Yeah, they are family too, but I feel so thankful and privileged to be uncle to these 3 great boys and 3 girls, and know they love me and want to spend time with me.

4) Freedom. I am especially thankful for the freedoms I have in Christ, but also thankful for the ones I still possess as an American.

5) My best friend. For years, I wished for a best friend, and 10 years ago, God brought a great guy into my life who has been the best friend I needed. He is someone I can tell anything to. Unfortunately, he lives 400 + miles away, so I don't get to see him very often.

6) The Bible. I wish I knew better how to read it and study it, but how amazing that God gave it to us as a guidebook to get through life and know His will.

7) Friends. I don't know how many genuine friends I have, especially after this election, but I know I do have some, and I am thankful for the ones who let me know that I am their friend.....I pray God helps me be the kind of friend to others that I wish others are to me.

8) Prayer. I may still not get it right, and it is something too many of us take for granted.....to talk to the God of the universe and know that He listens......wow.

9) My job. I like my current job more than any I have ever had, and am getting paid more than any other job I had.

10) Music. I have branched out more in music than I used to. For years, it was all Southern Gospel. That is still my favorite genre', but I now enjoy some praise and worship, Christian Contemporary, instrumental, and even country......though a very limited amount of that genre'.

11) Books. People who don't read don't know what they are missing. I still tend to read more Christian fiction than anything else, but it is amazing what I have learned and how God has helped and encouraged me through the medium of Christian fiction,

12) Health. Sure, I need to lose more weight, but I am thankful I am healthy and have no serious health issues.

13) Food. Fried chicken, pizza, mashed potatoes and gravy, chili, Mexican food, Italian food, Chinese food...... and on and on. It's awesome.

14) My Sunday School teacher. I believe I have the best Sunday School teacher I have ever had. When I was working Sunday mornings, I missed Sunday School more than the worship service. He's a great teacher and a great guy.

15) My musical talent. I wish I had furthered my piano lessons, but I am thankful for the ability I have to play as well as I do.

16) My same-sex attractions. Yeah, that may raise some eyebrows. I wish I had "gotten it" years ago, but in the last few years I have come to realize that this has drawn me closer to God, and could have done so years ago if I'd let it. It has made me - actually forced me - to depend more on God, and though it has been a long and painful journey, it is worth it. And if it wasn't this, it would be something else.

17) My car. I got a good deal on it, it is paid for, and has done me well so far.

18) Sundays. It is awesome that God set a day aside and commanded us to rest and not work......why would anyone want to argue with that?

19) Mondays. Currently, Sundays and Mondays are my days off. Sundays are set aside for church and resting from normal labor and activities, but Mondays......those are for sleeping in, going shopping, taking walks, and having "me" time. I love my Mondays.

20) The internet. It can be used for bad, as pretty much anything else in life, but there is so much good and I have made friends, received encouragement and hope, and other positive things.

21) Blue jeans. My clothing of choice. God bless whoever created them and perfected them.

22) Writing. I wish I was a better writer, but it is something I enjoy. A lot of what I write never sees the light of day, but it is cathartic and I occasionally say something helpful or encouraging.

23) My pastor and his wife. As with my Sunday School teacher, I believe my current pastor is  the best one I have ever had. I have known him since Bible college, and am thankful for him and his ministry and friendship.

24) Spring and summer. My two favorite seasons....I wish I could have them all year long. And no, I am not moving,

25) Air conditioning and heat. No explanations needed.

26) Running water/indoor plumbing. Can you imagine life without it?!

27) Peace. It can be elusive and not always present, but I am thankful for the times I feel it.

28) Christmas and Easter and all they stand for. God coming as a baby to die for me and rise again.

29) My iPod. Yeah, compared to other things, it may seem trivial, but it has made my walks over the years so much more enjoyable as I listened to great Christian songs as I walked.

30) My 5 senses. Sure, it could go in with health, but I am so thankful I can see, hear, taste, feel/touch, and smell. Not everyone has all 5.

1 comment:

  1. Great blog, Mark. #26...yes, I lived it all my growing up years! No indoor plumbing at all and we carried water 300 feet from the barn, and had an outhouse. So I am so very thankful for indoor plumbing! You do have a good Sunday School teacher. He loves to study and share truth. We pastored him for 5 years when he was a teen. We also think a lot of your pastor. So glad you have him.