Everyday's Thanksgiving, Part #10

I'm thankful for:

0181. music notes

0182. scarves

0183. the color blue

0184. youtube

0185. world history

0186. quotes by godly people

0187. flutes

0188. "Manger Throne" by Third Day

0189. God's gift of His Word.  I'm especially thankful for the first chapter of Luke today, as it's the most detailed account of the beginning of Jesus' life on earth.

0190. turkey and mashed potatoes

0191. the strength God gives for each day.  As thy days, thy strength shall be in measure...

0192. hymns

0193. a warm bed to sleep in

0194. finger knitting

0195. thick, fuzzy socks

0196. a loving family, both here and extended

0197. the blessing of my cousin-in-law being kept safe in Qatar

0198. yarn

0199. the promise of spring (and warmth again!)

0200. the blessing of giving things away



I hope everybody had a fantastic Thanksgiving!  My family and I went to Las Cruces on Wednesday and stayed the night there at my dad's parents' house on Wednesday and Thursday.  We spent the actual Thanksgiving day at my aunt's house in El Paso since my grandparents went back to Albuquerque on Thursday morning (you can tell our planning was a bit off).  In El Paso we saw the whole family on my mom's side--grandparents, aunt, uncle, four cousins, and my cousin's two children.  The only one missing was my cousin's husband, Johnny, who is currently serving in the Air Force in Qatar.

It was so much fun!  We came home yesterday, and it was good to be home too.  We got a grand total of fifteen pictures on the entire trip, and most of them weren't very good, but here's a few.

All the cousins.  From left to right; me, Rachel, Chloe, Ellie, Allie, Judy, Nicole, Austin, Albert, and John

All the cousins plus the grandparents

My grandpa has all of his pocket watches framed, and I saw a photo opportunity! :)


Just another thing to be thankful for...

Then Sings My Soul Special Edition by Robert Morgan

Then Sings My Soul is a collection of one hundred and fifty hymns; the basic themes for the hymns are Christmas, Easter, and just other widely known and recognized ones.  The lyrics to the songs are given, along with the music score and a one-page account of how and why the song came to be written.

I really enjoyed Then Sings My Soul.  At the beginning I came to the book expecting it to have much longer stories that went along with the songs, but after awhile I came to enjoy the quick, precise manner that Morgan has in explaining the stories of the songs.  I was reminded of many hymns I had forgotten, such as “The First Noel” and “Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing”, and found many I hadn’t heard before, such as “Jesus Paid It All”.  It was so encouraging to read of the faith of the people who had written these hymns, such as Horatio Spafford, the author of “It Is Well with My Soul”, who lost all four of his daughters when the ship they were traveling on sunk.  I think the book could be a great tool to worship leaders in that they could find hymns they hadn’t known of before that members of their congregation might enjoy to sing and/or listen to.  I would definitely recommend it to others; it was an all-around enjoyable read!

A Proclamation of Thanksgiving

Proclamation of Thanksgiving by the President of the United States of America.  A Proclamation.

The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies.  To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God.  In the midst of a civil war of unequaled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theater of military conflict; while that theater has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union.  Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defense, have not arrested the plough, the shuttle or the ship; the axe has enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore.  Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the battlefield; and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom.  No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things.  They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy.  It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and one voice by the whole American People.  I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens.  And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to His tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquillity and Union.

In testimony whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the United States to be affixed,

Done at the city of Washington, this Third day of October, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and of the Independence of the United States the Eighty-eighth.

-- Abraham Lincoln

I hope everybody has a fantastic Thanksgiving, and remembers all that God has given them and thanks Him for it!


New Every Morning

New Every Morning

   Blessings taken for granted are often forgotten. Yet our Heavenly Father ‘daily loadeth us with benefits’ (Psalm 68:19).  Think of some of the common things which are nevertheless wonderful:
   —the intricate, delicate mechanism of the lungs steadily and silently taking in fresh air eighteen to twenty times a minute;
   —the untiring heart, pumping great quantities of clean blood through the labyrinth of blood vessels;
   —the constant body temperature, normally varying less than one degree;
   —the atmospheric temperature, varying widely it is true, but never so much as to destroy human and animal life;
   —the orderly succession of day and night, spring, summer, autumn, and winter, so that, with few exceptions, man can make his plans accordingly;
   —the great variety of foods, from the farm, the field, the forest, and the sea, to suit our differing desires and physical needs;
   —the beauties of each day—the morning star and growing light of sunrise, the white clouds of afternoon, the soft tints of a peaceful sunset, and the glory of the starry heavens;
   —the symphony of early morning bird songs, ranging from the unmusical trill of the chipping sparrow to the lilting ecstasy of the goldfinch and the calm, rich, bell-like tones of the wood and hermit thrushes;
   —the refreshment that sleep brings;
   —the simple joys of home—the children’s laughter and whimsical remarks, happy times around the table, the love and understanding of husband and wife, and the harmony of voices raised together in praise to God.
   All these and many others come from the bountiful hand of Him ‘who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies; who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s’ (Psalm 103:4, 5).
   ‘It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not.  They are new every morning; great is Thy faithfulness’ (Lamentations 3:22, 23).
   ‘It is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord, and to sing praises unto Thy name, O most High’ (Psalm 92:1).

-- Philip E. Howard Jr.


Drinking From My Saucer

Drinking From My Saucer

I've never made a fortune
and it's probably too late now.
But I don't worry about that much,
I'm happy anyhow.

And as I go along life's way,
I'm reaping better than I sowed.
I'm drinking from my saucer,
'Cause my cup has overflowed.

I haven't got a lot of riches,
and sometimes the going's tough.
But I've got loved onesaround me,
and that makes me rich enough.

I thank God for His blessings
and the mercies He's bestowed
I'm drinking from my saucer,
'cause my cup has overflowed.

I remember times when things went wrong,
My faith wore somewhat thin.
But all at once the dark clouds broke,
and the sun peeped through again.

So God, help me not to gripe about
the tough rows that I've hoed.
I'm drinking from my saucer,
'cause my cup has overflowed.

If God gives me strength and courage,
when the way grows steep and rough.
I'll not ask for other blessings,
I'm already blessed enough.

And may I never be too busy,
to help others bear their loads.
Then I'll keep drinking from my saucer,
'cause my cup has overflowed.

-- Unknown


Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing

Praising the One Who has given me every blessing, and not given what I deserved...

Come, Thou fount of every blessing,
Tune my heart to sing Thy grace.
Streams of mercy, never ceasing,
Call for songs of loudest praise.
Teach me some melodious sonnet,
Sung by flaming tongues above.
Praise the mount!  I'm fixed upon it,
Mount of Thy redeeming love.

Here I raise my Ebenezer,
Hither by Thy help I come.
And I hope, by Thy good pleasure,
Safely to arrive at home.
Jesus sought me when a stranger
Wand'ring from the fold of God.
He, to rescue me from danger,
Interposed His precious blood.

O that day when, freed from sinning,
I shall see Thy lovely face.
Clothed then in blood-washed linen
How I'll sing Thy sovereign grace!
Come, my Lord, no longer tarry,
Take my ransomed soul away
Send Thine angels now to carry
Me to realms of endless days.

Oh, to grace how great a debtor
Daily I'm contrained to be!
Let Thy goodness, like a fetter,
Bind my wand'ring heart to Thee
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love.
Here's my heart, Lord, take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.

-- Robert Robinson

A Thanksgiving

A Thanksgiving

For all Thy blessings given there are many to thank Thee, Lord,
But for the gifts withholden I fain would add my word.

For good things I desired that barred me from the best,
The peace at the price of honour, the sloth of a shameful rest;

The poisonous sweets I longed for to my hungering heart denied,
The staff that broke and failed me when I walked in the way of pride;

The tinsel joys withheld that so content might still be mine,
The help refused that might have made me loose my hand from Thine;

The light withdrawn that I might not see the dangers of my way;
For what Thou hast not given, I thank Thee, Lord today.

-- Annie Johnson Flint


Yet All With Wings

In preparation for Thanksgiving...

Yet All With Wings

My God, I thank Thee, who hast made
The earth so bright,
So full of splendor and of joy,
Beauty and light;
So many glorious things are here,
Noble and right.

I thank Thee, too, that Thou hast made
Joy to abound;
So many gentle thoughts and deeds
Circling us round,
That in the darkest spot of earth
Some love is found.

I thank Thee more that all our joy
Is touched with pain,
That shadows fall on brightest hours,
That thorns remain;
So that earth’s bliss may be our guide,
And not our chain.

For Thou who knowest, Lord, how soon
Our weak heart clings,
Hast given us joys, tender and true,
Yet all with wings;
So that we see gleaming on high
Diviner things.

I thank Thee, Lord, that Thou hast kept
The best in store;
We have enough, yet not too much
To long for more:
A yearning for a deeper peace
Not known before.

I thank Thee, Lord, that here our souls
Though amply blessed,
Can never find, although they seek
A perfect rest;
Nor ever shall, until they lean
On Jesus’ breast.

-- Adelaide Procter, 1858


Give Them Parking Space But Let Them Starve to Death

Another moral threshold was crossed when a tiny baby boy, at the specific request of his parents and with the sanction of the Supreme Court of Indiana, was starved to death in a hospital. “Infant Doe” (he was not allowed the usual recognition of being human by being named), born with Down’s syndrome and a malfunctioning esophagus (the latter could have been corrected with surgery), died, as the Washington Post (April 18) stated, “not because he couldn’t sustain life without a million dollars worth of medical machinery, but because no one fed him.” For six days the nurses in that Bloomington hospital went about their usual routines of bathing and changing and feeding all the newborns except one. They bathed and changed Baby Doe but they never gave him a bottle. Over his crib was a notice, DO NOT FEED. Several couples came forward, begging to be allowed to adopt him. They were turned down.

What went on in that little box during those six terrible days and nights? We turn our imagination away. It’s unthinkable. But if I were to think about it, and put down on paper what my mind saw, I would be accused of playing on people’s feelings, and of making infanticide (yes, infanticide—call it what it is) an “emotional issue.” Let me suppose at least that the baby cried—quite loudly (at first). One report says that he was placed in a room alone, lest his crying disturb others (others, perhaps, who were capable of helping him).

Joseph Sobran, in his column in the Los Angeles Times Syndicate, suggested that “opposition to infanticide will soon be deplored as the dogma of a few religious sects who want to impose their views on everyone else.” The language sounds sickeningly familiar.

There has been a conspicuous silence from those who usually raise shrill protest when other human rights are violated—the rights of smokers, homosexuals, and criminals are often as loudly insisted upon as those of children, women, and the handicapped.

The handicapped? What on earth is happening when a society is so careful to provide premium parking spaces to make things easier for them, but sees no smallest inconsistency when one of them who happens to be too young to scream, “For God’s sake, feed me!” is quietly murdered? It is in the name of humanity, humaneness, compassion, and freedom that these things occur, but never is it acknowledged that the real reasons are comfort and convenience, that is, simple selfishness. “Abortion not only prefers comfort, convenience, or advantage of the pregnant woman to the very life of her unborn child, a fundamentally good thing, but seeks to deny that the life ever existed. In this sense it is a radical denial not only of the worth of a specific life but of the essential goodness of life itself and the Providential ordering of its procreation” (R. V. Young, “Taking Choice Seriously,” The Human Life Review, Vol. VIII, no. 3.)

But weren’t we talking about infanticide and haven’t we now switched to abortion? The premises on which abortion is justified are fundamentally the same on which infanticide is seen as civilized and acceptable. What Hitler used to call eugenics is now called “quality of life,” never mind whether the life in question happens to be the mother’s or the child’s. death, according to three doctors who put the issue out into the open in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1973, is now considered an option in the “treatment” of infants; in other words, a mortuary may now replace the nursery. One cannot help thinking of the antiseptic “shower rooms” of the Third Reich, where the unwanted were “treated” to death. Nor can one forget the words of Jesus, “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these My brethren, ye have done it unto Me” (Matthew 25:40, KJV).

Can any Christian argue that the smallest and most defenseless are, by virtue merely of being too small and too defenseless, not His brethren?

* excerpt taken from "Keep A Quiet Heart" by Elisabeth Elliot, pages 202-204


Everyday's Thanksgiving, Part #9

I'm thankful for:

0161. Aveeno lotion

0162. packing boxes for those serving in the military

0163. Ephesians 3:20-21

0164. books by Elisabeth Elliot


0166. children's laughter

0167. flashlights

0168. youth group retreats

0169. zip lines! (few people know what a miracle it is that I'm actually thankful for such things, but this past weekend changed me!)

0170. autobiographies

0171. how Chloe writes her name

0172. streams of water

0173. garlic bread


0175. Microsoft Word

0176. carpet squares

0177. stickers

0178. tuberculosis tests

0179. harmony...

0180. ...and melody!


WOW #3

I've been reading "Keep A Quiet Heart" by Elisabeth Elliot, and I wanted to include today just quotes from that book, whether hers or others whom she quotes in the book.  Enjoy!

A cup brimful of sweetness cannot spill even one drop of water, no matter how suddenly jarred. -- Amy Carmichael

Several Ways to Make Yourself Miserable

1. Count your troubles, name them one by one—at the breakfast table, if anybody will listen, or as soon as possible thereafter.

2. Worry every day about something.  Don’t let yourself get out of practice.  It won’t add a cubit to your stature but it might burn a few calories.

3. Pity yourself.  If you do enough of this, nobody else will have to do it for you.

4. Devise clever but decent ways to serve God and mammon.  After all, a man’s gotta live.

5. Make it your business to find out what the Joneses are buying this year and where they’re going.  Try to do them at least one better even if you have to take out another loan to do it.

6. Stay away from absolutes.  It’s what’s right for you that matters.  Be your own person and don’t allow yourself to get hung up on what others expect of you.

7. Make sure you get your rights.  Never mind other people’s.  You have your life to live, they have theirs.

8. Don’t fall into any compassion traps—the sort of situation where people can walk all over you.  If you get too involved in other people’s troubles, you may neglect your own.

9. Don’t let Bible reading and prayer get in the way of what’s really relevant—things like TV and newspapers.  Invisible things are eternal.  You want to stick with the visible ones—they’re where it’s at now.

-- Elisabeth Elliot

Father, let our faithful mind
Rest, on Thee alone inclined;
Every anxious thoughts repress,
Keep our souls in perfect peace.
-- Charles Wesley

Human life is full of trouble, which doesn’t come from the dust, said Job’s friend Eliphaz, nor does it sprout from the ground.  Man is born to trouble.  Compare your list of troubles with one famous man’s:

1. He had a difficult childhood
2. Less than one year of formal schooling
3. Failed in business as age 31
4. Defeated for legislature at 32
5. Failed again in business at 33
6. Elected to the legislature at 34
7. His fiancée died when he was 35
8. Defeated for speaker at 38
9. Defeated for electorate at 40
10. At 42 married a woman who became a burden, not a help
11. Only one of four sons lived past age 18
12. Defeated for congress at 43
13. Elected to congress at 46
14. Defeated for congress at 48
15. Defeated for senate at 55
16. Defeated for vice president at 56
17. Defeated for senate at 58
18. Finally elected president.

He was Abraham Lincoln, of course.  When I look at his list of setbacks, I wonder if I’ve ever had a problem.

-- Elisabeth Elliot

How To Forfeit the Peace of God

1. Resent God’s ways.

2. Worry as much as possible.

3. Pray only about thing you can’t manage by yourself.

4. Refuse to accept what God gives.

5. Look for peace elsewhere than in Him.

6. Try to rule your own life.

7. Doubt God’s word.

8. Carry all your cares.

-- Elisabeth Elliot

How To Not Forfeit the Peace of God

1. “Great peace have they which love Thy law: and nothing shall offend them” (Psalm 119:165 KJV).  “Circumstances are the expression of God’s will,” wrote Bishop Handley Moule.

2. “Don’t worry about anything whatever” (Philippians 4:6, PHILLIPS).

3. “In everything make your requests known to God in prayer and petition with thanksgiving.  Then the peace of God…will guard your hearts” (Philippians 4:6, 7, NEB).

4. “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me…and you will find rest” (Matthew 11:29, NIV).

5. “Peace is My parting gift to you, My own peace, such as the world cannot give” (John 14:27, NEB).

6. “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts” (Colossians 3:15, NIV).

7. “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing” (Romans 15:13, KJV).

8. “Cast all your cares on Him for you are His charge” (1 Peter 5:7, NEB).

-- Elisabeth Elliot

Measure thy life by loss instead of gain;
Not by the wine drunk but by the wine poured forth;
For love’s strength standeth in love’s sacrifice,
And whoso suffers most hath most to give…
-- Ugo Bassi

“But these strange ashes, Lord, this nothingness,
This baffling sense of loss?”
Son, was the anguish of My stripping less
Upon the torturing cross?
Was I not brought into the dust of death,
A worm, and no man, I;
Yea, turned to ashes by the vehement breath
Of fire, on Calvary?
O son beloved, this is thy heart’s desire:
This, and no other thing
Follows the fall of the Consuming Fire
On the burnt offering.
Go on and taste the joy set high, afar,—
No joy like that to thee;
See how it lights the way like some great star.
Come now, and follow Me.

-- Amy Carmichael

A Prayer Before Trial

O merciful God, be Thou unto me
A strong Tower of defence,
I humbly entreat Thee.
Give me grace to await Thy leisure,
And patiently to bear
What Thou doest unto me;
Nothing doubting or mistrusting
Thy goodness towards me;
For Thou knowest what is good for me
Better than I do.
Therefore do with me in all things
What Thou wilt;
Only arm me, I beseech Thee,
With Thine armor,
That I may stand fast;
Above all things taking to me
The shield of faith;
Praying always that I may
Refer myself wholly to Thy will,
Abiding Thy pleasure, and comforting myself
In those troubles which it shall please Thee
To send me, seeing such troubles are
Profitable for me; and I am
Assuredly persuaded that all Thou doest
Cannot but be well; and unto Thee
Be all honor and glory.  Amen.

-- Lady Jane Grey


Keep praying

- Continue praying for the people of Haiti!  The cholera epidemic has lessened, as I understand it, but there still is some danger.  Praise God that Hurricane Tomas has passed over the country, doing much less damage than was initially anticipated!  To see some recent pictures of the country of Haiti, especially after the cholera epidemic, go here.

- Also continue in your prayers for the people of Indonesia.  Mount Merapi erupted again yesterday, killing 90 more people and urging many others to flee their homes.  200,000 people have left their homes now, so we also need to pray that those 200,000 would find shelter!  Many people are badly burned and have had their lungs damaged by the volcanic ash in the air, and the hospitals are overwhelmed with trying to care for so many.  The volcano is expected to erupt again.  To read more go here.  Be sure to scroll down to the bottom of that page to see pictures of this tragedy; however, keep in mind that some of the images are graphic.

Jesus looked at them and said, “...with God all things are possible.”
Matthew 19:26


Everday's Thanksgiving, Part #8

I'm thankful for:

0141. algebra--my favorite school subject!

0142. volunteering opportunities

0143. God's tender love and care

0144. Matthew 11:28-30

0145. soccer

0146. goldfish

0147. the song "The Little Beggarman"

0148. "Twelve Extraordinary Women" by John MacArthur

0149. telescopes

0150. shooting stars

0151. Operation Christmas Child

0152. green ribbon

0153. Thanksgiving--it's coming up!

0154. U. S. history

0155. NaNoWriMo

0156. maple leaves

0157. the medical blessings in America

0158. how the elections went on Tuesday!

0159. aviator sunglasses

0160. fire alarms


It's like a disease...

I tend to make way too much of most things.  I'm doing that with this NaNoWriMo thing.  Two days into it, and I'm supposed to be...3334 words into it?


I have nothing.  Well, I have three words.  The name of my character.  But I don't even have a vague idea of what this person is going to do with her "life" which I hold in my hands.  *muahaha*  It sounds so evil.

I'm trying to remind myself that it's just a challenge.  That's all!  But nothing gives me writer's block like a goal.  Especially a 50,000 word goal!  That's about twice as long as anything I've ever written.  But, hey, even if I don't make that goal, I'll be further along in a story than I would be otherwise!  Still, I put too much pressure on myself in this.  I need to just make myself write.

But first I need a good night's sleep.  So good night!

I googled the name of my character and came up with this painting.  Maybe I'll just write a book based off of it! :)


Let's hear it for insanity

Most people haven't really heard of NaNoWriMo.  It stands for National Novel Writing Month and goes on during the month of November.  The goal is to write a 50,000 word novel over the thirty days of November.  So, I decided to do it.

I know, I know...


I have a very vague idea of what I'm going to write about, but I have a pretty cool name for the main character!  That's got to count for something.  And, keep in mind, I write a lot as it is, but nobody's seen any of my work other than poetry and articles in the past five years, so don't expect to read this!  I highly doubt I'll finish, but it's all for the challenge, eh?

*click on the picture to make it bigger!*

To God be the glory!
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