Turkeys are in the freezer case at the grocery store and the end caps on the aisles showcase stuffing and gravy. It must be Thanksgiving time.
Somehow we are nearing the end of the calendar year. Has anyone else experienced the year flying by? Have we remembered to pray for our nation, our neighbors, and our family?
my small church has been very busy with food pantry give-aways, preparing Thanksgiving baskets for the needy, and Operation Christmas Child (OCC) shoebox collection. It’s a blessed but tiring time for workers. So in some ways, life goes on even in this challenging time. I choose to focus on the positives and serve my Lord by serving others. I invite you to join me, day by day..
Happy Thanksgiving to you all – count your blessings.
We are moved into our new (to us) home, and I am enjoying the screened-in porch for my morning devotions. Just a few minutes ago, I was serenaded by a group of geese flying nearby, presumably heading south for the winter. The seasons are changing, but winter is still several months away. What tells them it’s time to fly to warmer temperatures? How do they know?
I am reminded of the beautiful pictures of monarch butterflies that make a yearly migration to central and southern California, and salmon that return to their spawning grounds to lay eggs and then die. What inner clock or map aids these creatures in their “circle of life?”
I believe all these examples point to a Creator Who instilled these actions into His creation to sustain life. How could we doubt that He cares for us as well? He does promise to care and provide for us (Matthew 6:25-33).
The Bible also tells us to look into the night sky and consider the vastness of all things and the greatness of our God. Those of us who love the beauty of this world – the mountains, seashore, and all forms of animal life – must remember to worship our Creator and not just the creation.
One of my favorite choral songs is “The Majesty and Glory of Your Name.” I’ve included it below. Join me as I worship and thank my Heavenly Father for all the good things in my life. I know He has blessed you as well.
“We must accept the end of something in order to begin something new.” (pinterest)
I just read an Upper Room devotional article about a girl leaving home to attend college for her freshman year. She realized that everything was changing; that it would never be the same again. The thought was scary and sad, but also empowering and exciting.
My husband and I are entering a similar phase at a much older age. We are making our 18th household move – the Air Force accounted for over half – this week as we move into a one-level smaller home closer to family. I have been counting the “lasts:” The last time driving from our current home to nearby shopping, church, and gas stations. The last friendly conversations with neighbors who are sad to see us leave. The acknowledgement that we no longer need long-held items as we down-size and sort through lots of things that we decided to give away because we no longer need them. Difficult decisions and just lots of “lasts.”
Here is the summary from that devotion, written by Colin Kelly: “I struggled with the idea of my life changing so rapidly. I prayed, reflected, and asked God for guidance. Just as the disciples had to accept that Jesus was leaving and that their former way of life was over, I had to remember that God led me here. And so I followed.
Although the goodbyes were tough, I know they prepared me for my future. Knowing that changes are part of God’s plan for me has made me grateful and optimistic. God is with us every step we take, even if that step is in a new direction.
Being born and raised in the state of West Virginia, I truly love traveling in and experiencing the mountains. Recently my husband and I were able to spend three days in Canaan Valley, a beautiful location that is surrounded by high elevations and gorgeous scenery. The cool fresh air, quiet surroundings, and abundance of wildflowers and wildlife truly ministered to me. It always does. I am reminded of Psalm 121 which states, “I will lift up my eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.”
My God, who created all the beauty in this world, from a tiny butterfly to a majestic landscape, is in control today and forever. Be encouraged, and maybe visit the mountains!
The events of recent days are enough to depress and confuse anyone. Covid numbers are rising just as another school year is starting, inflation is causing prices to go up on everything, and the situation in Afghanistan is growing more chaotic and tragic by the day. My prayers have gotten longer as I remember family, friends, the military and their families, and our nation repeatedly. It’s heartbreaking at times, and the questions come. Why? When?
I am reminded when I can see no immediate answers, that God’s timing is not ours and we must wait for His moving in His time. The Bible story of Lazarus comes to mind. Mary and Martha sent word to Jesus to come and heal their brother who was very sick. Jesus waited for several days before He came, saying that the illness was for “the glory of God, so that God’s son could be glorified through it.” (John 11:4) The sisters got their answer, but it came after the grief of the death of their brother. Jesus healed Lazarus by raising him from the dead – an answer that no one expected!
If, like me, you need a little encouragement today, listen to the song, “Rise Up,” which I discovered this morning when someone else shared it on the Upper Room devotion site. In His way, in His time, God will answer our prayers because He hears every one.