Wednesday, November 22, 2017

With Thanks This Thanksgiving Holiday

There are alot of images that "speak" of Thanksgiving.  From pilgrims and Indians to tables laden with food.  When I think of Thanksgiving, I picture a cornucopia overflowing with bounty.  Reminds me of the harvest season rich and full.  Reminds me of simplicity and how while it is simple, there's strength in that.  Reminds me of times spent with my family as I was growing up and how we would gather around the family table on Thanksgiving day and share a meal together.  The fruits and vegetables spilling out of the cornucopia makes me think of the bountiful blessings of God, ever flowing, never ending, a vast diversity of goodness.

The Thanksgiving holiday (my favorite of all holidays) makes me reflective, when I turn my thoughts to the past year and think back on how God has blessed my life or how His hand has kept me and provided for me.  For me, in my life, this past year, I've had some changes.  With God's help, I've received peace regarding other things.  Made changes, dealt with areas that could not (for now) be changed.  Moved on.  Healed.  Forgiven.  Accepted.

Found this beautiful prayer online and am posting it here.  Made a few changes (in blue) of my own. Definitely speaks what I feel in my heart.

"Thank you, God for the times You have said, "no." They have helped me depend on You so much more.
Thank you, God, for unanswered prayer.  It reminds me that You know what's best for me, even when my will differs from Yours.
Thank You, Lord, for the things you have withheld from me.  You have protected me from what I may never realize. 
Thank You, God, for the doors You have closed.  They have prevented me from going where You would rather not have me go.
Thank you, God, for the physical pain You've allowed in my life.  It has helped me more closely relate to Your sufferings on my behalf.  Have come to realize the power of "He is touched by our infirmities."
Thank you, Lord, for the alone times in my life.  Those times have forced me to lean in closer to You. I have felt your calming peace and powerful presence, reassuring me you are a real God, that I do not walk alone.  
Thank you, Lord, for the uncertainties I've experienced.  They have deepened my trust in You.
Thank you, Lord, for the times You came through for me when I didn't even know I needed a rescue.
Thank you, Lord, for the losses I have experienced.  They have been a reminder that You are my greatest gain. 
Thank you, God, for the tears I have shed.  They have kept my heart soft and mold-able. Thank you, Lord, that I can cry and feel.  Thank you, Lord that I do have emotions and can express them.  Thank you, Lord that my "tears are stored in vials in heaven."
Thank you, God, for the times I haven't been able to control my circumstances.  They have reminded me that You are sovereign and on the throne.
Thank you, God, for those people in my life whom You have called home to be with You.  Their absence from this earth keeps my heart longing for heaven. While the pain of loss hurt, I am thankful these people were in my life for a season and that their presence blessed my life.  Thank you, Lord. 
Thank you, God, that I have an inheritance in the heavenly places...something that this world can never steal from me and I could never selfishly squander.  Knowing that the adversity of my soul wants to kill, steal and destroy but he will never be able to kill my testimony, steal my joy or destroy Your Love for me.  
Thank you, God, for the greatest gift You could ever give me:  Forgiveness of my sin through Your death on the cross.  You came to this earth, robed yourself in flesh, walked and ministered among men and then was crucified on a cross, buried, taking the keys to death, hell and the grave.  The blood shed that day on Calvary stills flows today for whosoever will.  Thank you, Lord.  Thank you for the power of Your Word, the working of Your Spirit.   
Thank you, God, for the righteousness You have given me, through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  It's a righteousness I could never earn or attain on my own.
Thank you, Lord, that you know me.  You hear me and You see my tears.  You remind me through difficult times that You are God.  You are on the throne and You are eternally good.
And thank You, Lord, not only for my eternal salvation, but for the salvation You afford every day of my life as You save me from myself, my foolishness, my own limited insights, and my frailties in light of Your power and strength.  For when I am weak, You are strong."
-Cindy McMenamin, Author

Giving thanks, today...In ALL things.  For All things.

God is good.  His mercy endureth forever.

Wishing you and those you hold dear a blessed Thanksgiving.  May you feel God's presence near and may you be surrounded by His peace and comfort.  May your heart feel His love for you.