Twas the night before Thanksgiving and all through the house
Every creature was stirring, including the mouse
Everyone was working on all of the fixings
The noise and smells were coming from the kitchen
The children were busy with their tablets and toys
Captured in their games, they made not a noise
While the adults laughed and worked all collectively
What a beautiful sight it was for any heart to see
When all of a sudden there arose such a clatter
Mom ran to the kitchen to see what was the matter
She looked to the left and she looked to the right
She couldn’t believe what was in plain sight
There was broken glass from a favorite platter
And at first glance, she knew it didn’t matter
Everyone was frozen, waiting for her reaction
But she didn’t give the devil that satisfaction
The counters were a mess, preparations everywhere
It looked as though a tornado had just gone thru there
The turkey had flown from the platter to the floor
The poor thing looked like it just couldn’t take no more
The stove was a disaster waiting to happen
full of pots and pans, handles overlapping
The old mom would have immediately gotten on her broom
And painted the atmosphere with a bit of doom and gloom
But the new and improved mom was no longer that way
For she had learned the true meaning of Thanksgiving Day
She stared at each of them and the mess they surrounded
Knowing her response would leave each one of them astounded
Now sons, now daughters, in-laws and friends like family
Is this ever a sight for the eyes of my heart to see?
More than the chaos, the mess on the floor
The memories we’re making are worth so much more
So grab a rag, and a dishtowel too
Here’s one for each and every one of you
Let’s work together in cleaning up this mess
It will only take a few minutes or less
Pick up the turkey, and we’ll wash him off
We’ll stuff him but good and put him in the trough
We’ll baste him all over, and get him ready to eat
No one will ever know we stepped on his feet
And when the morrow comes and we gather for the meal
We’ll be able to discern what matters and what’s real
Faith, family, friends, love and laughter
Help to bring us all the happily ever after
I looked to each of them with tears in my eyes
And said something I had just realized
Oh, why can’t it be Thanksgiving every day?
Loving each other in a Christ-like way
Patience, self-control, love and joy too
Are there for the asking for each of you
We don’t have to wait for a holiday to see
That Christ’s greatest gift is that of family
Praying you enjoy your Thanksgiving, no matter what circumstances you are in, no matter who you are with … or not with!
Come closer, My beloved…
Those who are motivated by the flesh only pursue what benefits themselves. But those who live by the prompting of the Holy Spirit are motivated to pursue spiritual realities. And this must be sought after by pursuing Me, by desiring the deep things of the Spirit.
Come, My love, come and spend time with Me. Make it a daily habit that We can spend time together so you learn My voice, My leading and where I'm taking you.
Before you go anywhere in the natural, I desire you to come and know what I desire in the spiritual. I have much to share with you as you make that place of giving to Me. Never let your life become so busy that there's no time for Me, for you lose your sensitivity to Me and then you are doing things in yourself. And then before you know it, My beloved, you are wore down and out. Build yourself up in your most holy faith by singing songs and hymns and spiritual songs. Dance before Me just as I sing and take delight in you. Let your love for Me spill out even as My love for you fills your heart and life.
From God thru…
Thursday’s Trench Truth
He loves us too much to leave us in the same spot!
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Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art.... It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things which give value to survival.”
― C.S. Lewis, The Four Love
Welcome to Wednesday’s Word. Grab whatever you are having for your break and come on in and join me for what I pray will be a knot-tying time for us! Don’t forget that strand of faith, because friendship has a lot to do with our faith!
The last several weeks, there are two struggles that keep running into me, or should I say I keep running into them in my journey: Conflict and forgiveness! Ugh, sometimes I just want to blow right by them like I would an unseen stop sign. However, when I take the time to stop, HE never fails to grant me a new lesson, a new revelation. Granted, there are times I think, why do I always have to be the one to change? Well, because God has granted me the courage to know that the only one I can change is me! The illustrations He gives, the lengths He goes to in order to bring me through this lesson victoriously are…well, simply astounding!
Have you ever watched children in conflict? There is actually something to be learned by observing their struggle with innocence and their juggling of their little cups of pride that spill out onto the one they are conflicted with or by. There is this sort of bittersweet thing about them as they wiggle through their own frustration.
My grandchildren amaze me…fill my heart with so much love I never thought I had and at their young age, they teach me more than I thought I needed to know. When I watch them struggle in their childish conflicts, I realize that they still have a blanket of innocence around them that comes out after a few minutes of struggle and helps them to get over conflict so much quicker than you or I!
To watch children wiggle and wrestle with conflict is to witness the ingredients to what it takes to live out Colossians 3:12-13 which tells us “to put on tender mercies, kindness humility, meekness, long suffering, bearing with one another and forgiving one another if anyone has a complaint against the other, even as Christ forgave you, so you must do.”
Let me try and paint this picture verbally: At one of our grandson’s birthday party, there was a little girl whom he was in conflict with and as the party progressed, this girl, who by the way little B says “She’s a girl and she’s a friend, but she’s not my girlfriend” J – rather aggressively demanded her way continually.
At first he ignored her; that didn’t work. Then he tried appeasing her; that worked for a New York minute. And then as these things didn’t accomplish her desired goal, the conflict escalated and they began to sort of toss their point of view across to the other in hopes that the other would catch it.
But then, a burst of innocence would happen and one of them would stop it with a hug, or a simple “I’m sorry,” and the conflict was over. All was forgiven…until the next time she, or he, didn’t get their way, or the other felt slighted or ignored and not special and then the tug of war began all over again.
His other grandma, whom my heart loves, and I were talking about it and she called them “frien-emies” and that stuck with me; you can’t be an enemy unless you’ve been a friend first!
Think about it; we aren’t nearly as hurt or offended by a stranger’s behavior as we are by the behavior of one whom we love or care deeply for. Why can’t we be more like children, and get through the conflict with a simple “I’m sorry”? Why does it seem to require so much more as we get older?
Maybe it’s time to consider the value that that frien-emy brings to our life…and if there’s more conflict than caring, maybe it’s time to evaluate the amount of space they take up in our hearts without paying rent…
True transformation can only happen with another and that’s the value that a friend brings!
P.S. I’d like to wish one of my very best friends Janine Andriese Peace a beautiful and happy birthday. Love you so much, you amazing lady of God!
Faith Filled Friday
I just love the simplicity of Jenn’s blogs and I know you will too! Come on in and thanks for joining us for Coffee Hour with Chicklit Power and Faith Filled Friday with Trench Classes United.
I saw this bumper sticker: “If you see me on the ground, please drag me across the finish line.”
I am assuming this person was a marathoner. At first, I chuckled because that would be me if I attempted to run a marathon. :) There's a bigger thought here however.
As some of you know, I am big on sharing my journey, the ups and downs, even my struggles with faith. I believe in being real, authentic. I am incredibly grateful for the prayers others send up, for the inspiration I find everywhere, and the family/friends who talk me off the proverbial ledge. I like to think I return that favor when needed.
The Bible says in Thessalonians 5:11 "Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing."
This is what we are here for. This is what we go through struggles for. So that in turn we can be of help and encouragement to a fellow runner.
Life is like a race; sometimes one of us lags behind, maybe even lays on the ground until another comes along and “pulls us towards or over the finish line.”
I’ll do it for you; will you do it for others?
Have you ever done something and then thought, oh no, I shouldn’t have done that? Oh, have I got a big uh-oh to share with you today.
Thanks for joining me for Coffee Hour with Chicklit Power and Wednesday’s Word with Trench Classes United.
So picking up where we left off on Monday, I’m on my way home and discover that my GPS must have been in the mood for my company because it took me the long/wrong way home and by the time I realized it, there was no going back so I just settled in and continued making phone calls until I finally reached my off ramp, and wanted to drive the rest of the way home listening to some uplifting music and unwinding as much as one can in the car after an emotionally draining day.
As I made my way to San Timateo Canyon Road and turned left, I pulled up alongside and eventually passed a slow-going train. I thought, oh, I may have to stop up ahead when I make my right on Live Canyon. But I didn’t. There were a couple cars ahead of me that turned right and went over the railroad tracks, and I looked at the railroad crossing bars to make sure they weren’t coming down or that the lights weren’t on yet. They weren’t, so I proceeded forward. I looked to the right, quickly, and I saw the slow-moving train about 1.5 football fields down the track. No problem. I turned and as I landed on the tracks, the railroad crossing bar was coming down!
Instinctively, and quickly, I tried to back up. Nope! The one behind me was coming down on me!!
By this time, the train was about a football field down the track. I slammed the car back into gear and pushed the pedal to the medal. My car lunged forward so fast and I escaped as the rear crossing bar came down on the roof of my car.
I drove in utter and complete shock for about a half mile and dared to look out my back window. I saw a piece of something hanging so I pulled over and got out. It was a rubber piece that encased the antennae on the roof of the car. The little red wing that covered the piece that encased the antennae was gone, but at that moment I didn’t see any other damage…until I got home.
By the time I did get home, the reality of what had just happened had washed all through me and I was near hysterics. I went back and forth between thanking God for his provision of protection and beating myself up for not stopping and just waiting for the frapping train to pass. Why had I taken such a risk?
I couldn’t sit still for hours; I was really wound up like an angry robot swimming between thankfulness, disbelief and trying not to drown in it all. I kept seeing the train coming and the forward and rear crossing guards coming down on my car, as if to trap me…but why didn’t they?
There’s no other explanation other than to say: God met me in the midst of my problem and He rescued me, despite me! See, in my heart, I know that I am not supposed to be working more than ONE day a week; and I keep pushing the envelope. From the drive to get to work, to the computer problems trying to prevent me from working to the long drive to make it home to a near-death experience, God was there…despite my choices.
Coffee Hour Friend, in what area of your life do you need rescuing? Can I encourage you that no matter where you are in any mistake you may have made that God is ready, willing and able to meet you there!
Wow, it’s August already! Thanks for joining us for Coffee Hour with Chicklit Power and Monday’s Mantra with Trench Classes United. You’re in for a treat today with some thoughts from our friend, Jenn Woolsey.
People love to quote the Bible verse about how God hates divorce. Well guess what, He does. But not for the reason it’s usually used... but because He hates the pain it causes His children and the future generations.
I was in a co parenting class today… listening to tips on getting along and focusing on the child in a “reorganized family.” I found it helpful and I believe it’s necessary.
But, I can’t get this nagging thought out of my head: what are we doing to prepare people for the fact that marriage is so important; that it can’t be taken lightly? It’s not about the excitement of feeling in love or filling a void, or even creating a family. It’s about choosing to love even when you don’t “feel” like it.
I listened to the stories of other couples, I know my own story. I was woefully unprepared. I chose unwisely. How can we prevent this in the first place?
Oh to spend more time on the answer before we are faced with the dilemma of this epidemic of divorce.
Thanks for joining us for Faith-Filled Friday!
This week on social media a friend of mine posted a song that helped her during a season of anxiety and depression. It is by Hillsong, Young & Free, and it spoke to my heart so I thought it would be great to share it with you.
You are peace to a restless soul
Peace when my thoughts wage war
Peace to the anxious heart
That's who You are; that's who You are
You are peace when my fear takes hold
Peace when I feel enclosed
Peace when I lose control
That's who You are; that's who You are
I've found peace far beyond all understanding
Let it flow when my mind's under siege
All anxiety bows in the presence of Jesus the Keeper of Peace
And peace is a promise He keeps
Shortly after reading the words to that song, my mom-in-love sent me a message about a passage in the Bible that talks about God anointing our heads with oil. I read the verse from Psalm 23, and the explanation of what it meant for the shepherds in that time to anoint the sheep.
The sheep would get their heads stuck in a barrier, and insects would lay eggs on their heads and in their noses and this would cause them to itch uncontrollably so they would ram their heads into the wall to stop the itch. The shepherds would anoint their heads. This understanding gives so much clarity for this portion of scripture in Psalm 23:5-6
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. 6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
I got to thinking, aren't we just like these sheep, getting our thoughts stuck on things that aren't the truth; finding ourselves listening to lies of the enemy to the point we want to bash our heads to make it stop, to silence the constant chaos that is going on in our minds? It takes the simplest thing to set us off course, just one word from someone, one mistake we made, the list is endless.
Beloveds, we aren't perfect and our imperfections make us easy prey for the beast to come to devour us, and he does so by turning us against ourselves. We must allow Him to anoint our heads with oil.
What is this oil? It is His perfect word.
Don't forget beloveds when the lies are overcoming you, to cry out Jesus and allow His Word to anoint your head/mind with oil.
Have you ever received a gift and then allowed someone to take it from you? Then why do we allow others and circumstances to get in the way of our specially-crafted God-given gifts? Thanks for joining us today for Faith-Filled Friday with Trench Classes United and Ashley. Come on in.
We all have been given gifts of the spirit. My gifts are writing, teaching children, and as my mom in love would say, I am a nurturer. It took me quite some time to be able to say these are my gifts, but now that I know, it's important for me to utilize each one God has given me.
Has anyone spoke down to you or tried to squash your God designed gifts? Well, I pray you won't be like me and listen to their lies. The enemy will use anything or anyone to keep us from fulfilling what God has provided us with. People and their thoughts about us do not define us. Our identity is in Christ and all of us fall short.
Our flesh runs amuck in us; we speak before we think; we lose our patience. The list can go on and on. However, this doesn't mean our gifts or our salvation is lost, just as Matthew 6:12 tells us:
We may lose friends and/or family; but remember they don't define us. We continue to love them, pray for them, and ask God to help us move on. Beloveds, please don't allow someone to steal your specially-crafted gifts from God by believing the lies others say about you. Remember to take all things before the Lord and let Him weed out the truth from the lies.
2 Corinthians 10:5 ESV: We tear down arguments, and every presumption set up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
Faith Filled Friday
Recently, I made a decision and I felt justified by my decision to remove certain people from my life. Now I didn’t make a big deal or scene with this decision I made; it was a decision I had made in my heart and mind. I felt no remorse for it and was convinced that God was behind this decision. You see I have been hurt by these people all my life, and my weary heart could not withstand it any longer, or so my weary self thought.
Thanks for joining me today for Coffee Hour with Chicklit Power and Faith-Filled Friday with Trench Classes United.
Last Sunday during worship they played a song that talked about fighting for love. As I sang this song, tears flooded my face. I was to fight to love these people, not for me, but for God because this is what He instructs us to do. I cried my broken and weary heart out to the Lord. I came before him standing, but in my spirit, I was on my face asking God to forgive my wretched heart. After worship, I dried my tears, and the pastor begins to speak in 1 Peter about loving your brothers fervently. As I am listening to the message the tears continued to flood down my face. I couldn’t contain them. My purpose is to show Christ's love, and here my heart and mind’s decision was the furthest thing from His love.
1 Peter 1:22 New King James Version (NKJV)The Enduring Word 22 Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth [a]through the Spirit in [b]sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart,
Looking back, I do recall a period of my life where I had fallen away from the Lord, and lived my life the way I wanted for my pleasures, and didn’t want anything to do with God. Yet, He still loved me and sought after me, and here I am throwing in the towel. Needless to say, my heart was convicted to the core, but I love how gentle and tender God is with correcting us. He does it with grace and love.
Can I encourage you beloveds, if there is someone difficult in your life who causes you pain or hurt, just ask God how you are to love them and for the strength to do so. It could be either through prayer or actions, a smile or a simple “How are you?”
You see when we put ourselves and our feelings down and allow God to work it’s not us they see but Christ who lives in us. Let’s be like Jesus, though we didn’t deserve his love or grace, He still gave it abundantly. Let us follow in His footsteps.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8 New King James Version (NKJV)4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not [a]puffed up; 5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, [b]thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
8 Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.