There's a chorus we sing at church, "Give Thanks with a grateful heart" and I'm pondering today if we really understand what it is to have a grateful heart. Too many times we think things are supposed to be this way or that way, we don't understand why God allows problems and trials into our lives and we spend entirely too much time looking on the dark side instead of seeing the things we have been blessed with. Scripture teaches us to be content and to be thankful.
There's a sign on the church down the road, I noticed this morning it asked the question, "Have you told God 'Thank you' today?"
Tomorrow we celebrate Thanksgiving and sometimes I think we forget, in the hustle and bustle of fixing a turkey and the trimmings, or having family and friends around, in the noise of the football games and the chatter of the children to stop for a moment and think about the things for which we are truly blessed.
As for me, this year I have been most especially blessed. My cancer surgery was successful and I was blessed with a stage 1 grade 1A cancer. God brought me successfully through the surgery and recovery. I am blessed with a wonderful family, dear friends, precious grandchildren, a husband who loves me beyond what I ever hoped or dreamed, parents who are still in good health, a home we love, and so many more things. But most of all I am blessed because I know my Redeemer liveth and on the Earth again shall stand. I know the life He giveth and grace and power are in His hand.
May your Thanksgiving be blessed.
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Everybody keeps talking about decorating for Christmas....ugh. I don't even want to think about dragging all that stuff out until after Thanksgiving. We're expecting 14 for dinner on Thanksgiving Day, I don't want to have to focus on anything but that for right now. I'm doing a traditional Thanksgiving Dinner, it'll be only the second in our home since I moved to Florida. We always spent Thanksgiving with my husband's mother, but she passed away this past Spring and is sorely missed. I decided this year I'd do dinner here at home. I may have made an error!!! LOL
I just realized there's only 37 days until Christmas and I am definitely NOT ready this year. By this time I've usually got my shopping well in hand, I've barely begun this year. I seem to be moving slower in general this year. I suppose my cancer surgery changed my view of what is most important in life. I'm thinking that I may just do AMEX Gift Cards this year for all but the littlest ones.I did get my kitchen and laundry room floors installed. They look wonderful. The new vinyl flooring is fabulous, looks and feels just like real wood. All I have to do is a quick sweep and mop with a Swiffer. I like that!
It's sometimes hard to think about it being time for Christmas and Thanksgiving when you're still wearing shorts and it's 80 degrees each day. Maybe I need to start playing some Christmas Carols to get in the mood...."It's beginning to look a lot like"....nope that's not doing it.
Friday, November 6, 2009
This has been a busy, busy week for me. I'm getting new flooring in my kitchen and laundry room and my house looks like a fruit-basket upset. My refrigerator and stove are sitting in my dining room and living room, respectively, however, it's given me time to relax and read some! Hence this post and the next two books in the "I Blog For Books" cycle.
Both books are written by author Melody Carlson and run the gamit from teen angst to the fading lights on life. They each teach, however, that God can and does work in the lives of people no matter their age, that it's never too early in life or never too late to follow God and see His Will for our lives.
LIMELIGHT is the tale of fading beauty Claudette Fioré. Her suicide attempt, after the IRS seizes all her assets, forces Claudette to return to the meager Northern California town where she was born, to the house left to her by her mother and to her estranged sister. Without servants, expensive salons, shopping trips on Rodeo Drive or any of the other things of her former pampered lifestyle, Charlotte begins to see the truth of her old life and begins searching for truth, wondering if it is too late to make things right.
On the opposite end of the scale DIARY OF A TEENAGE GIRL is the tale of sixteen-year-old Maya Stark. Her mom will soon be released from prison, changing everything she's known. Filled with all of the problems of today's teens this well-written novel will be a blessing to teen girls. It teaches them to be strong, and to look in the right direction for answers to problems...up.
Both of these novels will make wonderful additons to our church library. More information on LIMELIGHT and DIARY OF A TEENAGE GIRL may be found at the Random House website.
These books were provided for review by the Waterbrook Multnomah Publishing Group.
Monday, November 2, 2009
It's Monday again and time to blog about books. As I look at the calendar I've turned the page to November and sigh, wondering what happened to January through October! Seems like only yesterday I was putting away the Christmas decorations and here it is, almost time to take them out once again. Meanwhile, I'm enjoying reading some terrific books.
One of them is LEAVING CAROLINA. Let me start out by saying that RARELY do I read a book written in first person. They are generally the kind of book I pick up at the bookstore, read the first two pages and quickly set back onto the shelf. Had I done that with LEAVING CAROLINA I would have missed an entirely enjoyable and, at times, hilarious read. I'd hazard a guess, with the way the book ended, that Tamara Leigh is writing a series of books set in Pickwick, North Carolina and featuring the very unusual Pickwick Clan.
The Pickwick family has been known for four generations of miscreants, ner-d0-wellers, and down-right misfit relatives. Piper Wick is forced to return to her hometown to prevent her Uncle Obe from changing his will and airing all the family dirty laundry in public, including her own youthful indiscretion, which would ruin her chances of marrying the man of her dreams, Congressman Grant Spangler.
Upon her arrival Piper is forced to deal with a long-lost godson, her cousins, and her uncle's dotty attorney, all the while trying not to reveal her secrets and trying to save herself from sliding back into old habits and avoiding the pull of Pickwick.
LEAVING CAROLINA also gently reminds us that forgiveness is a gift from God and that truth matters above all. All in all this is a thoroughly enjoyable read.
More information on LEAVING CAROLINA can be found at the RANDOM HOUSE website. LEAVING CAROLINA is available at local booksellers as well as most online booksellers.
This book was provided for review by Waterbrook Multnomah Publishing Group.