Tuesday, November 27, 2012

After You Give Thanks

LIVE GENEROUSLY!!

Ever wonder what you should do after you give thanks?

1. Treasure your treasures
"Tell me the things you truly value in life and I can tell you the worth of the life you live."

2. Be blessed by your blessings.

Luke 12:15 "Life is not defined by what you have, even when you have a lot." (The Message)

3. Share your wealth!
What are you wealthy with? What are you doing to share it?

Matthew 10: 8 "You have been treated generously, so LIVE GENEROUSLY!" (The Message)

Every year on Thanksgiving my family and I sit around for a few hours and talk about what God has done in our lives over the past year. I probably say this about a lot of things, but it's really one of my favorite things we do each year. God is alive and very real. He's not a made up character to make us feel better about ourselves and life. He's very real. Even if you don't believe in Him, He believes in you.



Titus
  • I’m thankful for the grace God gives us. He is okay when we don’t get things right the first time; He expects it and takes care of it.
  • I am thankful for the challenging job God gave me.
  • I am thankful that God created music. I was thinking about the "what is your favorite sense at Christmas" question, and mine is hearing. I struggled with using music as a means of praising God until I got involved in making the music. I realized that He set it up in that fashion as something to participate in and not just observe.
  • I am thankful for Amanda’s hugs and kisses.
  • I am thankful for the creativity and ingenuity God has given people. He gave people the ability to create things that make our lives better, directly impacting our lives. Cars, and bojankety cars…even those are really really awesome…ice cream.


Amanda
  • I’m thankful for what we are doing in Mexico; the opportunity to go and bring presents. God has been through every part of it. At first it didn’t seem like it would work out but God has helped all the way. The money has been coming in. I'm really excited for this Sunday. We're going to have a tree with ornaments with every "adopted" kid's name on it. The people can take the ornament home and hang it on their tree, hopefully as a reminder to pray for their child.
  • I am really thankful that I went to Kid's camp. I think God has wanted me to do something with kids for a while. It was extremely difficult but good and now I work with Kidzone which is very meaningful for me. I felt so bad for not getting scores in at camp, and felt like a failure. I prayed that God would allow Ariel to win the "Fruit of the Spirit" award to show that I had not failed in what was important. And she won!
  • I am thankful for our movie and book club that we go to every month. I love spending time with the dedicated people there. I also like that Ariel gets to come and I get to spend time with her. She is growing up. It is nice to have something every month to look forward to doing with my friends.
  • I am really thankful for prayer, especially the prayer journals I do with the kids. I have really enjoyed doing that with the boys in the morning. Gabriel has been drawing intricate crosses for prayer. Zech prays his own prayers and stops and thinks about what he prays. I have enjoyed the few times we went to the church prayer too. In the car we talk about someone and then take turns praying for them. We just stop and pray for people like if an ambulance goes by or someone's name comes up in conversations. It is too easy to say we should pray and not do it so we have been stopping right then and there to do it.
  • I am really thankful this Thanksgiving that for at least part of it we were all together. Daddy got to be here for this today. It has been 6 years since he's participated!... And I am thankful for Goodwill! God has shown me good will from that store. I have found so many different things. It really is a cool store. It is the only store that you can go in every other day and the stuff changes.


Ariel
  • I am thankful for my community group, His Strength.
  • I am thankful for my family and Autobahn and Valentine.
  • I am thankful that I have $25 so far for a new cell phone.
  • I am thankful that I get to play the oboe this year and I am getting way better at it.
  • I am thankful for my school cause I can hang out with my friends. And also I get to learn at school.

Gabriel 
  • I am thankful for God’s miracles, like when I went to the book night they had a drawing to win The Diary of a Wimpy Kid. When I was at my third session with Mrs. Hedstrom, they did the drawing. Two other kids got a lower prize and for the highest prize they announced Gabriel won! Someone said I should play the Lottery because you are so lucky. It was not luck, it was God. So I am thankful for God to God.
  • I am thankful for another miracle… One day I was getting ready for soccer, but I lost my shin guards so I had to go without them. The coach took me out. I prayed to God that they would walk up to me. In the third quarter a man saw how sad I was, went to the store and spent almost $40 on me. The shin guards kind of did walk up to me!
  • I am thankful that God is teaching me about the Bible and I am learning to avoid trouble. I was in the bathroom at school and everybody was yelling and I got out. All that were in there got a DR. (Discipline Referral)
  • I am thankful for my family, God and my relatives…all the way to Adam and Eve. I am really thankful that someone invented crayons, markers, and colored pencils.
  • I am thankful that I have a lot better life than the people at school. I have looked at my family photos (the screensaver on the computer) and see that my family does a lot of fun things. The kids at school just come home and watch TV every day.


Zechariah
  • God helps everyone have a great day.
  • I am thankful for God. He helps me do stuff. He has a sword of help that smushes. That helps you.
  • I am thankful for Stefanie had a good day at Shaun’s house cause she is going to live there.
  • I am thankful I can write my name…zech! (he typed it himself!)
  • Games!! I want somebody else to play a game with me…the best game….Sequence!


Mike
  • I’m thankful for my wife, she always straightens me out. I need someone to keep me on the straight and narrow.
  • I am thankful that I am able to spend Thanksgiving with my family.
  • I want to thank the Lord for watching over me when I was driving down highway 50 going east to Emporia. I was following this truck hauling a bunch of stuff and suddenly all the stuff came flying out at me. I kept hold of the cell phone and didn’t even drop it. Thank God for paved shoulders, I swerved to the right and got out of the way. It didn’t hit me or impale me. Thank the Lord for watching over me!
  • I am thankful that I didn’t have to buy a new car and it only cost me $300 instead of $3000. Also that I got the shock absorber fixed and it is stable now.
  • I am thankful for going to Michigan and learning about all that happened when I was a kid and that someday it is going to stop. I am looking forward to going back there next year. It seems like it gets worse and worse but it just means I am getting closer to the end, digging up more crud. The devil is trying to discourage me but I am close to a breakthrough.


Debbie
  • I am thankful for puzzle piece trust in God, a cool idea from God to help me with my faith. I trust Him one day at a time, not looking ahead for tomorrow or the future.
  • I'm thankful that through properties going vacant, and prayer with Mike, my faith has been stretching. God is always doing way more than we think. He is sovereign and has a bigger plan than just money.
  • I am so thankful for God watching over my mom when she passed out. Grandpa woke up and found her; he doesn't normally wake up in the middle of the night. Her blood sugar was so low if he hadn't found her she would have died. I'm not ready for that.
  • I am thankful for the road trip to Buffalo that I took with Stefanie. The whole thing was wonderful. We had a terrific adventure and saw so many interesting things along the way. And I'm thankful for the road trip with Ariel this summer. She is an awesome traveling companion.
  • I'm thankful that I've still had the opportunity to go to my sign language class. It's something I've always wanted to learn. I think ever since I saw Helen Keller. The sign language teacher even talked to me about a job opportunity this spring. Every job I've had since I've been married has fallen into my lap.

Shaun
  • I am thankful for relationships that make you stronger.
  • I am thankful that God always provides what I need and sometimes what I don’t need too.
  • I am thankful that God provided some extra jobs for me to do so I could go to the soccer games with Mikaela and spend time with her. That is the only way I was able to do that.
  • I am thankful that I have a house and a car that doesn’t break down and is almost paid off. It's been almost 15 years for the house.
  • I am thankful for my accountability group that I am part of. Not just for the accountability but helping each other to move forward in our goals.

Mikaela
  • Food so I don’t starve to death.
  • For my parents that pay for my stuff.
  • Friends to spend time with.
  • Church family

Stefanie
  • I am thankful that God continues to tell me to wait, because I am learning that He has a lesson behind the waiting. It is His favorite word for me so I should like it.
  • I am thankful that sometimes God wants to bless us but sometimes He is waiting for us to ask so He makes it sure it is Him. Like praying about Mexico, praying that He would pay thru my tips. I got $60 the first day and now have over $125. He likes to do the unexpected or crazy things. He is not really boring at all or predictable except that He is awesome and great.
  • I am thankful that my car is still working. I have had several problems with it recently and thought I would have to get a new one. I still have my car and can still save for a new one. It is not perfect but gets me where I am going and I don’t have to walk. And I will be able to buy the car I really want to get and not take out a loan.
  • Like I was saying on the video Sunday, I am thankful for the opportunity to go to Colorado. God stretched me a lot and I learned a lot of new things. He was preparing me to do something here. If I hadn’t gone away I feel as if I wouldn’t be doing what I am now. I'm thankful for the mountains I got to live around.
  • I am thankful for prayer as well because I have realized how important and effective it is. I don’t think it was accidental that we read Piercing the Darkness. It was a reminder to me how we are in a spiritual battle. God shows me images while I am praying that things are changing. God is stretching me in prayer. Spiritual warfare is real. We are going to do more in church. Like Michelle sharing that her first instinct was worrying but instead she prayed first. I am excited for our day of prayer coming up. I am excited to hear more stories of how God is stirring up prayer in people’s hearts.

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