I’ve been in Tennessee this week attending a conference. The conference itself was full of good material, things that, if used, will make a big difference in my ministry (I hope).
One thing I always look forward to taking home from a conference is books.
I love books. I always have a pile of books on my desk that I’m working through, and then another pile at home by MY chair that I pick up in the evenings, and then there are the countless audiobooks that I listen to while going to bed or making long drives.
I spend a lot of time in books.
So at this conference, I picked up a different kind of book. It’s a journal. Rather than having pages and pages and pages of information to absorb, it has pages and pages and pages of…well…just blank pages.
This particularly journal has guided prompts for my to fill in. It’s sort of a journal for those who don’t know what to journal. I can see the value in that. I’ve journaled for years (in paper journals and electronically) and knowing where to start is has always been the biggest struggle.
This mornings journal section in the “new” journal asked a simple question, that I hope is asked every day…”What are you thankful for right now?”
It’s a beautiful morning in Tennessee. The sun is shining. I’m heading home and I can’t see why all the airplanes wouldn’t be running on time (though I might be disappointed with I get to the airport). Nothing happened back at home that Kristi and the kids couldn’t handle without me (I really don’t know whether or not to be too happy about that since it proves my growing lack of relevance). I’m coming home with a ton of information to work through and apply that will be beneficial to me. I’m looking forward to seeing family next week for Thanksgiving.
Thanksgiving, the holiday, needs to become Thanksgiving, the everyday occurrence.
Even on our worst days, we need to look for how we can give thanks to God.
I realize this is difficult when struggles mount, when pain is present, and when everything around us disappoints us. I don’t say this because it’s easy to do. I say this because it’s necessary to do.
We can be Thankful, everyday, because even in the darkest of days, we are never left without hope. The problems that surround us can only hold us for a moment. The struggles we currently face may be the secret ingredient to learning to trust more fully in the Lord. Disappointments are opportunities to strengthen our prayer life and also recognize that this world is not our home (Thanks Be To God).
As we approach Thanksgiving Day, let’s keep the 100th Psalms on our minds every day…
“Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.”
Psalm 100:4-5 NIV
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