Holidays are here again. Is it just me, or is time flying faster? Thanksgiving is just a little over a week away. That is what I want to write about. Of all of the holidays, that one is more about our Christian walk. Christmas is more about Jesus, or should be, and so is Easter. But Thanksgiving is about our walk before the Lord and our attitude about it. Be ye thankful.
Thanksgiving shouldn’t just be connected to the U.S. All Christians in every country should have a time to be thankful. Recently a young lady reminded me of how much I use to teach about a good attitude. I haven’t written about a good attitude in a long time. If ever, there was one day you needed a good attitude it is on Thanksgiving Day. It is a time to tell the Lord “thank you”. Thank you for my life, my family, my love, my friends, my things, His dying for me. Be thankful.
Last November, I had a time where I almost died. The doctor said that I came within two hours of expiring. I woke up in ICU with much thanksgiving on my heart. Ever since then, a whole year, I can hardly pray without being thankful that God let me live a while longer. We need a wakeup call every once in a while. I have surely had mine. I was so dehydrated from puking that my organs were shutting down. The hospital can bring you back around if they can get to you in time. In my case, my husband was there for me. Not everyone has someone.
If I had let my good attitude slip, such an experience can bring it around fast. In order to understand what a good attitude is, you need to know what a bad attitude is. It is an emotional, learned, bad habit. It is a habit. Imagine, letting your children develop a bad attitude and yet people do. I have seen my husband go up to a child, say hello and stick out his hand to shake. The child turns away rudely, ignoring my DH, who is a pastor. The mother sees it and apologizing says, “ he is just shy. “ No, he is rude and has a bad attitude and the mother is ignoring it. She has just reinforced a bad habit. That child will grow up into an adult with a bad attitude, trying to navigate in a world not impressed by bad attitudes.
Worse yet, far worse, that child might become a Christian, but one with a bad attitude. How can God bless a bad attitude? I don’t believe He can. He is the perfect Father and He knows that we must be thankful for what we have before He can give us anything more. Would you give your child a new doll when she purposely destroyed her old one? OK maybe you would, BUT God is the perfect Father and He knows better than that.
This Thanksgiving we have a perfect chance to teach our children about having a good attitude and being thankful. They go hand-in-hand. In our house, we ask everyone to say something they are thankful for. If May says her Mom and Dad, don’t allow Billy to say the same thing. Expect everyone to speak from their hearts and be truly thankful. It will tell you heaps about your kids spiritual condition. Try it.
It is our prayer that everyone has a very Happy Thanksgiving.
ANGELS: This article that follows was written by Angel Candy who is my daughter. My most recent article follows hers and mine is simply entitled Christmas. Please check them both out. Thanks. Angel Janet
thought that Counts
A dozen roses with the Quik Trip logo on the tag, a huge bottle of really cheap perfume, a voucher for an hour long massage, when you know they’re only good for 5 minutes tops, a boxed gift that hasn’t seen the light of day in a good few years or a bad attempt at a homemade bar of soap are all wonderful examples of something I might deem acceptable if they were given to me by my ten year old son, but might not be so excited if they came from someone who ought to know better. Yes, there is something to be said about saving money and giving gifts from the heart. You know—it’s the thought that counts. But exactly what thought counts?
Here’s a thought, I ran out of time today and I thought of you last! Or, I really need to buy myself something nice and wouldn’t you know it, I ran out of money! Or my favorite, I forgot all about you! These are thoughts, but are they the thoughts that should count? Maybe saying that it is the thought that counts has just become an excuse.
From my own experience I know that this is true. One unforgettable memory still surfaces for me every year at Christmas. There was a balmy hot summer inNew Zealand, and the gifts wrapped so nicely a few days before were quickly fading in the intense sunlight streaming through the windows. Suddenly I was called to a birthday party only two days before Christmas, and I was unprepared. It was a new friend, and she’d been shy about informing all of us of her special day. So in the tradition of re=gifting I hastily grabbed what I knew was a gift from a student, and was obviously a box of chocolates. Imagine my embarrassment when she opened the box, and inside were melted little blobs of old Caramello delights, each one clinging to the packaging, unmovable without a spoon. My thoughts before giving the gift were much different from my thoughts after.
This Christmas I find myself a little short on funds, like a lot of people. But after the Caramello incident I think about people I care about for months in advance, and choose to think that others are like minded. Maybe we all need to learn a lesson from each other. There are ways to save moneyANDbe thoughtful. Know what people enjuoy, and what inspires them. Learn about the ones you love, and be conscious of what they say.
In the New Testament we read of the widow who gave the last of her resources in her offering to the temple. Jesus commented to the disciples that she would always be remembered for this selfless act of faith. She didn’t have much to give, but it was all she had. And the little boy whose 5 loaves and 7 fishes fed a crowd of thousands became a profound gift for all time.
According to Luke6:38we should give and it will be given back to us. Give cheerfully (everyone knows the difference) and give generously. But most importantly, give thoughtfully this year.
I’ve been asked many times now how often I post. Right now I try to post once a week. Sometimes I go 10 days when I am really busy, but I wait on you to ask for more. I would love to write once a day. So it is in your court. Let me know what you think. Have a blessed Angel day.
i had a dear lady write and express fear because she is pregnant and sees her life as very bleak. She is very worried. What to do? Signed Worried
The only answer possible is to turn to God and to trust Him. He knows and understands her predicament. No matter what her story is, or if there is a man to stand beside her. God is there, standing beside her. He is our protector, our lover, our Savior. No problem is too big or too small for Him. I don’t know your relationship with Him, but you need to know Him personally. If you don’t know for sure if you are a Christian write me an e-mail at email@example.com and I will write you a personal letter. I know that I can help. Please write. It is worth your time.
To Eat or Not to Eat
I want to introduce you to a 13 year old boy named Ken. Ken was on the edge of an abyss. This is a true story and it really happened to Ken. He was entering his teen years and he was confused, bewildered and
just plain scared. Ken was a missionary kid. He was leaving the U.S. to go back to the country of New Zealand without his two sisters, only his Mom and Dad. He was going to a new city and new school and new church. He had no friends or even anyone he knew. He didn’t even have his dog any more. It was a scary time for a kid. Although no one knew it at the time, he had started into anorexia.
Ken was a good looking kid, but he was husky, definitely not fat, but well built. Some of his skinny friends in the U.S. had made fun of him. So upon reaching this unknown state he was in, he did the only thing that he had any control over. He decided that he would lose weight. Being 13, he had had no practice in dieting.. So, he simply stopped eating. His Mom noticed a few days into the fast that he wasn’t eating, but Ken learned to lie rather quickly. He would say that he had already eaten at a friend’s house, or at school, or any place to throw Mom off his trail. The days slipped into weeks and the weeks into months. Mom threatened and tried to get people to listen to her, but it truly seemed like she was imagining it all. Ken continued to lie and exercise and lose weight.
I don’t know if you have ever been around anyone with anorexia, but they get to be skin and bones. They lose weight everywhere, their feet, hands, face, legs, everywhere, but their nose. Ken’s nose began to stick out between sunken cheeks. He was changing his looks drastically. By this time, everyone was noticing how skinny he was. Dad began to be major upset. He threatened the boy and tried to force him to eat. Have you ever tried to make a child eat? It can’t be done. These were no ordinary parents, in that they were loving and affectionate and cared greatly for the boy, but it wasn’t enough.
After a few months they contacted an American doctor friend they knew. She thought that it was anorexia and prescribed a modification in behavior. That doesn’t work. So they took him to a physician. He took tests and talked to the boy and found that he was indeed anorexic He suggested treatment in a psychiatric hospital and forced feeding. This seemed to throw up red flags to the parents. If it wasn’t medical then it was spiritual. The psychiatrist treatment would be a sorry substitute for spiritual treatment. Ken was a boy in trouble and needed some answers.
The parents thought for awhile that it might be demonic. Indeed, the boy thought that he was fat when clearly he wasn’t. He would look in a mirror and see fat. They tried praying for Satan to leave him, but that didn’t work. Now desperation set in. Mom cried and cried continually. All either of them could think about was Ken and what might happen. If he didn’t get treatment soon, his organs could start to shut down. Many anorexics die from anorexia. You can threaten, bribe, encourage, discipline, appeal to his reasoning, but you cannot force a child to eat. The only thing they knew to do was to take Ken to a counseling center in CO where a man of like faith had an office. So soon Ken and his Mom were on a plane flying to CO for counseling.
Ken had been not eating for 9 months. It was the worse time of our lives. You see, Ken was my son and my DH and I and Ken went through this terrible time together. I honestly didn’t know if Ken would live or not. I would wake up at night crying while dreaming of Ken. I wouldn’t wish such a time on my worst enemy, but out of our worse time in our lives, came our greatest blessing. It won’t be easy to describe to you what happened in such a short space, but I will try. The psychiatrist would have tried to treat Ken with worldly wisdom. We only look to God for answers and in His book that He has given to us.
In five short days of about 3 hours of counseling a day, Ken was over his anorexia. I know that many say that a person is never over anorexia, but when God sets you free you are free indeed. (John 8:36) Ken’s problem was that he was in the center of his life. He only cared about his own truth and how he saw himself. God was not in the center, and Hello, God won’t take a second seat to anybody. Don’t be too critical of the anorexic or of Ken, because most everyone is in the center of their own life. They want to be in control and do not step down for God’s control. John and I discovered that we were in the same boat as Ken. We controlled our own lives too. The smoker is there, the druggie is there and the alcoholic and the gambler and you name it. Everyone wants to be in control, and God is saying “go on then, but don’t ask me to help.” Most Christians go on for years being in the center of their own lives. Look at the Israelite s wandering in the wilderness for 40 years, it is exactly the same. They said that they would be in control. There is a saying to “let go and let God” . It is too simplistic but it is true. As along as you want to be in control, God will let you, but if you want Him to bless you, then you must step aside and allow God to do with you as He wants. What ever that means is what is best for you. And so it was with Ken and with us. We wanted God’s best for our lives and we had to give Him permission to take over and we did it verbally in prayer and He took center stage.
Today our son is the pastor of the International Baptist Church in Howick, New Zealand. He is restored completely to us and our relationship is wonderful. There is no hint of anorexia in the man. If you need this type of release you must read Romans 12:1-2 and present your body a living sacrifice. If this has been a blessing to you, please let us know.
Angels are yielded,
DH means dear husband
Angel-up means the same as man-up
Attitude check means to change your attitude from negative to positive
DD means dear daughter
DDS means dear daughters
DS means dear son
SS means Sunday School