It's always amazing to me that just about the time Dan & I feel discouraged and down, that the Lord sends us something to encourage us. It may be a word from someone or a gift or just an uplifting week at church. It's those little bits of encouragement that keep us going. They help to keep pushing us forward.
I'm reminded of Hebrews 12:1-3 ~ "Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne. Think of all the hostility he endured from sinful people; then you won’t become weary and give up."
I can imagine us running on a track with the crowds of believers who have gone before us, standing on either side cheering us on. I have to remember to keep my eyes fixed on Jesus and not look at the obstacles in my path.
This weekend our youth group sponsored a car wash, tag sale and bake sale to raise money for camp next summer. It was wonderful to see how people in our church pulled together and helped out with this. It was encouraging to see 12 youth there throughout various times in the day, working and having fun. It is heart warming to see their enthusiasm, as well as that of the couple that runs our newly formed youth group. These are the things that keep Dan & I energized and excited about our ministry here.
Today I'm thankful for Blessings #682-700
♫ My favorite season of all!
♫ Being able to talk to my children about the Lord.
♫ Family devotions and discussions.
♫ The fire chief who was kind enough to send over three of their smaller vehicles for the teens to wash.
♫ Firemen who watch out for my son.
♫ Warm sweaters and socks.
♫ Connecting with new people in our community.
♫ A beautiful day for our church's youth sponsored tag sale & bake sale.
♫ God providing just what we need at exactly the time we need it.
♫ A little one calling my name and waving to me as I sang on the worship team.
♫ Hiking with a group of friends from church.
♫ An opportunity for Nathan to go to New York City with friends from the firehouse to see the 9-11 Memorial.
♫ A joyful worship service.
♫ Changing colors.
♫ Hard working people in our church who pitch in and go above and beyond when needed.
♫ The smell of yeast in fresh baked bread.
♫ Our small group and challenging each other.
♫ The gift of encouragement.