Thursday, November 26

giving thanks

'give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.' (1Thess5:18)

this thanksgiving, i wanted to share something i heard this week regarding this verse and one small word... in. throughout my life, i think i've interpreted this instruction to read - give thanks for all circumstances. i think sometimes as Christians, we may be encouraged to give thanks for our circumstances, no matter what they may be. which is real easy to do when things are "going your way". but what about when they aren't? when you lose your job? when you can't afford your mortgage and your house is foreclosed? when yet another person you know is diagnosed with cancer? when your 9 day old niece dies unexpectedly? when you've been praying about something for weeks or months or years and God seems silent? when you feel like you just can't take any more bad news?

when my mindset is that i should be giving thanks for my circumstances, i start questioning God. i question His love, His goodness, His kindness. i ask why? i get angry, my attitude turns bitter, and i start to doubt Him.

but that is not at all what God is asking of me. He wants me to give thanks in all circumstances. this one little word makes a world of difference in my heart. our circumstances are going to be trying and at times, unbearable. but our hearts can give thanks. we can choose a posture of gratitude. today, i'm giving thanks for my salvation, for a family and friends who stand by one another in the face of tragedy, and for a God who loves me, just as i am.

my circumstances are out of my control. the beat of my heart is up to me.

today, i'm giving thanks in my circumstances.

Monday, November 23

advent conspiracy

i don't know about you...

but i can't wait to eat my first candy cane of the season! or decorate the christmas tree... or consume egg nog on a daily basis... or watch my niece's face when she comes downstairs christmas day and finds presents under the tree... or watch 'the muppet christmas carol', 'a charlie brown christmas' and 'the grinch who stole christmas' (the old cartoon version of course!) with family and friends.

i can wait, however, to shop in an overly crowded mall as each and every store seeks to entice me with their best deals,bargains and things i just 'have to have'. i can wait to watch my own self-centered and materialistic mind begin a wish list of a few items i'd like this holiday season, which will then snowball into a list of junk stuff that is way too long and way too unnecessary. i can wait on the stress of the season and the quickness with which is always seems to pass as my calendar fills up with one more errand, one more gift to buy, one more commitment to fulfill.

the end of the year has the potential to be stressful, exhausting and lacking meaning. but this video gives me hope that it can be different - christmas can be captivating, refreshing and meaningful. it can reflect Jesus.

i don't know about you...

but watching that video felt like breathing fresh air. i can't wait to conspire.

(and a thank you to northgate and some friends there who are leading a study on this and introduced the organization to me!)

Thursday, November 19

simple things birthday thursday

well... another week has come and gone! today i am thankful for the simple blessing of family, and more specifically, my sister, heather. and may i take this opportunity to add that this post totally has nothing to do with the fact that today is her birthday! ;)

heather has been my sister for 23 years. this means that for 23 years i have had someone to talk to, share clothes with, share a bedroom, play games, create games, discuss boys and their respective cooties, hang out with, pull hair, scream and fight, laugh with, cry with and figure out life! really, in the last 23 years i've had a best friend. and that, i think, simply says it all. (:


happy birthday heather!!!

Thursday, November 12

simple things thursday

i've decided to try something on this here blog. every thursday i want to take the time to write about something in my life. something i'm thankful for... a simple thing. my reason for this (why do i always feel i have to explain myself? hello psychoanalysis!) is mostly due in part to my gigantic fail at this, and this is another attempt to a) cultivate an attitude of thankfulness and gratitude and b) write here more often. so welcome to simple things thursday (:

coming up with today's blog was simple. (oh dear... one day, when i'm all out of ideas, i will write about my corny sense of humor) but really, this pretty much says it all...

it doesn't take much to make me happy... a good book, a slice of fresh banana nut bread, a vanilla rooibos tea latte and a little corner of a starbucks to tuck myself away in for a few hours. feed my stomach, feed my introversion, feed my mind and feed my spirit.

it's the simple things, really (:

Tuesday, November 10

any way the wind blows

the weather has been warm(ish) and wonderful the last few weekends in western new york, so john and i have been enjoying our sunday afternoons by taking drives to explore and see what we can see! this past weekend we drove south, where we saw at least 40-50 of these things:

i understand there's a bit of environmental controversy surrounding their use, however… for the sake of this blog we're just gonna go with i. think. they're. cool. in a quixotic sort of way!

so on sunday john quixote (his cleverness) and i set off in search of these humongous giants. or as i like to call them... wind turbine thingys.

it was a grand time! i did not get car sick. (take that finger lake exploration sunday!) we did not get lost. (ok, with john's sense of direction we never get lost. *knock on wood*) and we did indeed find the wind turbine thingys!

(note: these photos were taken memorial day weekend 2008, when i drove up from cuba the country cuba the town in new york to batavia and first discovered them!)

then yesterday i saw this video:

i had no idea we were in such danger.

john quixote and his lady fair: 1. wind turbine thingys: 0.
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