Our Thanksgiving, thankfully, was low-key this year.  Amazing food, only our fam of five and Sherry’s folks and grandparents, some football, playing, laughter, games, parade watching and a bit more (even some work in there).  But thanksgiving goes beyond this day.  Sherry and I have been countlessly mentioning how blessed we are.

These kids are too much fun!  We can see how people would very easily fall into the love of their kids above their first love as husband and wife.  You develop these relationships with kids that are so intimate and personal and you want so desperately for them to do well . . . and you’re so proud of them!  It’s hard to remain objective as parents; seeing what’s best for them while wanting what they want!

But our real blessing lies in the fact that we have one another, that we have health, love, life and Christ.  I learned of two tragedies in the last two days.  One of my school students (a sixth grader) lost his dad to a heart attack suddenly while another broker her back!   It’s hard to imagine.  We are so blessed with what we have.  So undeserving.  I FEEL (and I know we shouldn’t base everything off of this) like my life is so good.  I don’t know how to handle it.  I think ultimately I need to be blessings others with what I’ve received (2 Cor. 1.3-4 speaks well to this), yet in another light I sense I must find the joy in it.  I want to be living in the Truth, I want to be receiving convictions (1 Thes. 1.6), but I also want to live with the joy of the Lord and a Spirit that is contagious with His power (same verse).  For so long I’ve lived like I’m not good enough in anything I do.  I know I’m not and that I’m undeserving, but I also know that God doesn’t want me constantly beating up on myself, either.  I’d rather have a heart that is thankful than one that is mopey.

I was reading today in Matthew 5 the Beatitudes.  There a bit of poor in Spirit, a bit of meekness, mercy that comes forth, a purity in heart that’s vital and . . . maybe a bit of all of them that needs to be a part of what we are to be as responders to Christ’s love.

I am clearly thankful today.  I could list the ways, but I wouldn’t want to forget anything, either.  Above all, I’m thankful for my God, His death on the cross and defeat of death it caused by rising again, my amazing and beautiful wife, our three kids and all the others in my family, my friends, opportunities to minister through work, my country, the Word of God, prayer, technology and this age in which we live and more . . .

Happy Thanksgiving 2008.

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