Thursday, December 10, 2015

365 Days of Praise - February & March

This year, I've been sharing one thing I'm thankful for each day on Facebook.  I was going to share them here as well but after today, I'm not going to do that because my computer is finicky and the amount of time it takes to go through my newsfeed and find them and cut and paste them here is taking up way too much time.

Today I'll share February and March's list of thankful things. You may or may not want to wade through this list.  Either way is fine with me. ;-)

Day #32 ~ Praising God that we can come to Him as we are. There is no need to be perfect, good or even clean up our acts before we can turn to Him.

Day #33 ~ I’m thankful that I’m learning to accept how I am made.

Day #34 ~ Thankful for a new day and a fresh start. Yesterday was less than stellar so I'm thankful for God's mercy and waking with a renewed spirit.

Day #35 ~ Had to go to a meeting last night and I'm so glad I did because I would have missed this beautiful sight. Thankful for an ever changing and beautiful sky. It's a terrible picture but was incredibly beautiful.

Day #36 - Thankful that Emily's friends love coming here. One of her friends asks to come here when she is feeling down because she leaves feeling encouraged.

Day #37 ~ Thankful for some large "to-dos" that have been crossed off my list, including filling out the 2015-2016 FAFSA for Stephen., That always causes a bit of anxiety so I'm glad it's done.

Day #38 ~ Thankful for spiritual inspiration I received from wonderful books as a teenager. They shaped who I am today. The Hiding Place, The Cross and the Switchblade, Hinds Feet on High Places, Peace Child, The Troubadour, and God's Smuggler are just a few of the books I read.

Day #39 ~ So thankful for a neighbor who came over yesterday to help Dan shovel off our roof. We needed to make room for the next storm!

Day #40 - Thankful for my love of cooking and the satisfaction I get from creating in the kitchen. I know for some it can be drudgery so I'm glad that I get so much enjoyment out of it. I wish I had the same enjoyment with cleaning.

Day #41 ~ Thankful that despite a fitful night of sleep, a headache, a leaky ceiling and other big and small problems I face each day that there is joy in my heart. I know it sounds hokey, but it's because of what The Lord has done for me and this adventure He has given me. I love my life even with the problems!

Day # 42 ~ Thankful for the life of my middle child, Stephen. Today he turns 22 years old. He is funny, intense, determined, compassionate, forgiving, and passionate about things of the Lord. I am so proud to be his mother.

Day #43 ~ Thankful for the beauty of flowers and how they can make my spirits rise. I bought these "just because" as I was grocery shopping at Aldi the other day.

Day #44 ~ Thankful how God works in my life through my struggles. So often I want Him to make my life easy and stress-free and yet, it's through those things that I draw close to Him and mature as a believer. So I am thankful for the things that cause me distress because of the end result.

Day #45 ~ So thankful for the Valentine's in my life - Dan, Emily, Nathan, and Stephen. God graciously gave me the desires of my heart!

Day #46 ~ So thankful for a wonderful morning at church. Even though the temperatures were cold and we had an understandably smaller number of people, we had visitors and a fun time of fellowship afterwards. Now looking forward to a relaxing rest of the day.

Day #47 ~ Thankful that even though the temperatures are below zero that the sun is shining today. There is something about seeing sunshine that lifts my spirits. It's a good start to the week.

Day #48 ~ Thankful that we are taking a family day to help our son to work towards realizing a dream. Heading off to Onondaga Community College to take a campus tour and register him for a class. Praising God for the work He has done and is continuing to do in Nathan's life. He struggles daily and yet is one of the most determined people I know. We've definitely seen the Lord's hand on his life.

Day #49 ~ Thankful for finding ways I'm blessed each day. This exercise is making me stop and think about my life each day and see the plenty I have. It's not necessarily material things, but I have so much to be thankful for and it's good to recognize that. Focusing on the blessings keeps me looking up!Day #49 ~ Thankful for finding ways I'm blessed each day. This exercise is making me stop and think about my life each day and see the plenty I have. It's not necessarily material things, but I have so much to be thankful for and it's good to recognize that. Focusing on the blessings keeps me looking up!

Day #50 ~ Thankful for a son who even when knocked down, picks himself back up and moves forward.

Day #51 ~ Thankful for local friends who support my business.

 Day #52 ~ Thankful for parents who are on the same page as Dan & I in helping our children navigate life.

Day #53 ~. Thankful for a wonderful evening with neighbors! Had fun, TeriLynn & Len!

Day #54 ~ Praising God for middle of the night musings and confessions. I'll be tired in the morning but I feel like a weight is lifted off.

Day #55 ~ Thankful that we found great accountants to do our taxes. We've used them for years and they always have our best interest at heart and are experts at the tax laws. I used to do our taxes until Dan became a pastor and then it became a nightmare. Praising God today for Ken Mann & Gina Zaubi Mann! They happen to also have the same beliefs that we do and are honest and above board in all they do.

Day #56 ~ Thankful for the opportunity I have to stay home and be available to my husband and children as well as being the boss of my own schedule. I know not everyone is able to do this and it is a blessing.

Day #57 ~ Thankful for a fun event to plan which is getting me out of the winter doldrums!

Day #58 ~ Thankful for the young men who came and shoveled off the snow and removed the ice from the church roof yesterday. It seems to have stopped the leaks. Also thankful for the facility managers and leadership who work to keep up with these things.

Day 59 ~ Thankful for a fun afternoon with some terrific people. We had great conversation and laughter.

Day #60 ~ So thankful for God's hand of protection on one of Emily's friends. Emily invited this girl to sleep over last night and today found out that the girl's roof collapsed right over her bedroom. Praising God today!

Day #61 ~ Thankful for two days of having a solid chunk of time to work on my new book.

Day #62 ~ Thankful for modern day servants that make my life easier. Can't imagine living without a washer, dryer and all the other gadgets I rely on each day.

Day #63 ~ Thankful that Emily is feeling better after four days of a fever, wheezing and coughing. She had an allergic reaction to chia seeds on Saturday (can now add that to the long list of allergens) which always ends up triggering her asthma. She's been home all week but today looks and sounds so much better.

Day #64 ~ Thankful that Stephen is coming home today for a week! I’m ready to fatten him up a bit.

Day #65 ~ So thankful that even though it's still cold, the days have a different feel about them. It's lighter on both ends and is starting to feel like spring will actually get here. Very thankful that no matter how hard the winter or circumstances, for that matter, spring always comes! There is always light at the end of the tunnel, no matter how long and dark.

Day #66 ~ Today's a bit harder because I did something to my lower back and I'm in pain. However,  being thankful isn't always about things going well. Today I am choosing to find the blessing.  I'm thankful that I don't have to be anywhere or do anything today and I'm thankful for a husband who is willing to run and pick me up something to help.

Day #67 ~ Thankful for a meaningful time of prayer in church today. It was encouraging to hear different people praying that God would work in our hearts, families, church and community.

Day #68 ~ So thankful that I'm able to put my talents to work to make a little extra money, doing the things I love.

Day #69 ~ I'm very thankful that God has used me in ministry for the past 30 years. I often struggle with feeling insecure because I'm not the "typical" pastor's wife. I'm not quiet, demure, or reserved. I'm not the woman who is quietly behind the scenes. Nor do I play the piano - gasp!  God made me outgoing, outspoken, transparent, social and bubbly. I have gifts in leadership and organization. I am comfortable with anyone, regardless of their social, economic or spiritual background.

Throughout the years I've tried to mold myself into what I think others want. I struggle because I'm different than what some think a pastor's wife should be. But I'm thankful that the Lord is helping me to embrace how He MADE me. He CREATED me with the gifts, talents AND personality that I have.

So as my husband keeps telling me, I need to be the woman God created me to be and stop trying to change my personality to please other people! So I'm praising the Lord today for helping me come to this conclusion. And I'm sorry for the book today! LOL!

Day #70 ~ Thankful for a steaming hot cup of coffee in the morning. Especially this morning

Day #71 ~ So very thankful for a wonderful afternoon with my husband. We drove, we had lunch together, we talked and we enjoyed one another's company. It was a very needed few hours.

Day #72 ~ So thankful to be a ministry partner with my husband. Wouldn't want to do anything else!

Day #73 ~ Thankful for having Stephen home this past week. He heads back to college tomorrow after church and will be missed.

Day #77 ~ I'm very thankful for the ability to stay in touch with people through social media. I have a love/hate relationship with it but for the most part I like it because it allows me to keep up with family whom I hardly ever get to see. I have reconnected with friends from college and seminary. I can stay in touch with our co-workers around the district and friends who are in other countries. It's a useful tool for staying connected with those I love and miss.

Day #78 ~ We had a conversation last night about teen girls who are unhappy, especially when they base their whole life on a boy. When the guy breaks up with them they sound almost suicidal.  I was so thankful to hear Emily say, "I don't need a boyfriend to make me like myself." I have no reason to be unhappy." "I love my life!" What every parent wants to hear.

Day #79 ~ Thankful that I have never been afraid to try new things. Because of that I learned to bake my own bread, make my own soap and cleaners, mend my own clothes, garden, cook, write, leave all that was familiar to go into full-time ministry, went overseas, and have experienced a thousand other things in my life.

Day #80 ~ Thankful for this beautiful sight right outside my back door, reminding me of beautiful scents and colors to come.

Day #81 ~ Very thankful for a wonderful time of fellowship tonight as some from our church reached out to the seniors at a local center. We provided them with dinner and encouragement. They were so appreciative!

Day #82 ~ Thankful that even though it's cold, the sun is brightly shining. It certainly lifts my spirits

Day #83 ~ Thankful that the snow has melted to the point that there are shoulders again on the road. I was able to get out, walk and enjoy the sunshine this morning even though it was freezing! It feels good to see signs of warmer weather to come.

Day #84 ~ So very thankful for the variety of food there is in this world and how easily accessible it is nowadays. Take fruit for an example. It is absolutely amazing at how creative God was in all the varieties that he made.

Day #85 ~ Thankful for wildlife outside my door. So beautiful!

Day #86 ~ Thankful for a flowing river and the walkways are clear of snow. Another sign that warmer weather is coming.

Day #87 ~ Thankful for a quiet morning making these while I reflect and pray. I love this time if the year.

Day #88 ~ Thankful that my daughter went off on a school trip to Philadelphia this weekend and I'm thankful for chaperones who work to keep our kids safe! She was so excited.

Day #89 ~ Thankful for sunny day this Palm Sunday as I praise the King!

Day #90 ~ Thankful that Emily had a wonderful time this weekend and made it home safely.

Day #91 ~ Thankful for new orders every week. I'm glad people like my items enough to order them!Day #91 ~ Thankful for new orders every week. I'm glad people like my items enough to order them!

So there you have it! I'm enjoying the exercising of being thankful 365 days a year.