Wednesday, November 30, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 30

Day 30: I'm thankful for all the MANY blessings I receive daily!

Today is the last day of my Month of Thankfulness and yet I've not scratched the surface of being thankful for all the blessings I daily receive! "Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah." Psalm 68:19

This morning before I ever got out of bed I began to think about what I could say today. A song came to my mind. One that was a favorite of our family when we used to sing together a lot. It was written by one of Bro.Ronnie Simpson's daughters but after all this time I'm not sure if it was Cindy or Gwen! I hope they won't mind me sharing some of the words here today because it says so well what I'd like to say today. It begins like this: "The LORD has blessed so many ways...that I couldn't begin to tell good He has been!" I'm not sure I have the rest of the song word for word even but this is close:

"I've been blessed with a family, that has felt God's great touch. He's been present in trials, and has loved me so much. Though we've failed, though we've stumbled, on His Word we still stand. And we know He'll be faithful...till we reach that fair land......But the greatest of all blessings that I ever received...was His saving power...when on His Name I believed. I had nothing to offer...but my guilt and my was all through the blood...and His Holy Name!"

Although this is the last day of A Month of Thankfulness on my blog, you can rest assured that I will continue to be thankful and try to recognize God's blessings each day!

Thank you for joining me in this journey of thankfulness!

God bless you!


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 29

Day 29: I'm thankful for the beautiful snow I woke up to this morning!

It's all pretty much gone now but it was pretty while it lasted! There was enough of the heavy wet snow that it took out my internet by covering up the satellite dish. After I figured out what had happened Benny took the broom and swept it off and all was well.

Every time I see snow I think of the verse in Psalm 51:7 that says, "Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow." It doesn't matter how muddy or dirty or littered a yard may be...if a good heavy thick snow settles on top of it, it's clean and beautiful looking! God says that's sort of how it is when He covers our dirty sins...our lives look snowy white! Not because we've tried to clean ourselves up, but because He has covered us with His righteousness! I am SO thankful for this!

May God bless you!


Monday, November 28, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 28

Day 28: I'm thankful for our wood heater!

I'm pretty sure a wood stove was at least part of the heating system in my Daddy's house when I was born but we moved from that house when I was two so I have no recollection of it. Only stories he's told. Gas heaters are all I remember growing up. We had a couple of space in the kitchen and one in the living room...and then a big furnace type heater in the middle of the house. Daddy would always light the pilot light in the big heater sometime around the last of October every year. I can remember my Grandma Martin pulling her chair up really close to the heater in the kitchen and sit there until the front of her shins were turning pink and her bones began to warm up. I had a few friends that had central heating and air in their homes but I didn't like the way it came on and off. Off till you got cold. On till you were burning up.

And then when I married Benny I was formally introduced to heating with wood. The first couple of winters we were married we lived in a cabin at the lake which we heated with a huge fireplace. Most of the heat went up the chimney. I stayed soooooo cold those first winters! And then Benny decided to get our first wood heater. Oh my! What a great difference! Not only did it actually heat the house but it was such an even, gentle heat. It took some getting used to for this "city girl" but I got the hang of bringing in wood, building a good fire, and taking out the ashes. It's not as simple as flipping a switch but for us we hope to keep using wood heat as long as we're physically able. Most all the work falls on Benny's shoulders now...cutting the wood, hauling it up, splitting it in smaller pieces, filling up the wood box beside the heater, and keeping the fire going. In years past when the kids were home they helped cut, split and bring in the wood. Before they were big enough to do any of that, they would open the door for me as I made several trips in and out bringing in wood for our huge wood box. Lots of memories associated with our wood heaters.

This morning even though it's 36 degrees and misting rain outside, there's an even warmth in the house. (Let it get down to 5 or 10 degrees with a stiff north wind and it's a different story though! lol) I'm very thankful I have a warm home during cold wet weather. I don't want to take it for granted because I realize there are millions throughout the world who don't have this advantage.

I hope for you today a warm home and a warm heart!


Sunday, November 27, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 27

Day 27: I'm thankful for the good Sunday School teachers in my life.

I'm sure I've had a lot of good ones because I've been in Sunday School all my life. But two stand out in my mind the most. First is Mrs. Lena Pearl Griffin. She was the head of the Junior Sunday School Department at First Baptist in Ripley when I was a kid. I remember some of the things she would say and stories of missionaries she would tell us during the "opening assembly" each Sunday morning. She was a great example and in fact still is a great example at the age of ninety-something!

The other one was Bro. Leon Mathis who taught the Young Married Class at Tiplersville Baptist when Benny and I first got married. He was very smart in the Bible and was able to communicate his godly wisdom to us in a very effective way. I think I still have some of my notes from his class in a filing cabinet somewhere!

I pray that today as I try to teach the ladies class that has been entrusted to me that I will be able to encourage and build up these ladies in the Lord!

May God bless you!


Saturday, November 26, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 26

(Me & Mama)

Day 26: I'm thankful for the women who have been an inspiration in my life.

There have been many. The very first one was my Mama. I never fully appreciated her for all she was until after she passed away when I was just sixteen years old. And although Mama was the woman who inspired me the most, there have been many others who have made a lasting impression on my life. If you are a woman and are reading this, you most likely are on my list! You may have touched my life in a large way or (to you) a seemingly small one. You may or may not know that you have given me a word of wisdom or encouragement or reprimand that helped mold and shape me.

My daughter Elizabeth is high on that list in my heart and mind. She keeps on going when the going gets tough. And she is my biggest fan! lol Even though she probably knows me better than another other women alive, she still thinks I'm better than I actually am! I love her so much! I've been blessed with a great daughter-in-law too. I admire her greatly for leaving her native land and family and coming to be a part of ours. I know it's not been an easy road for her. I only have one sister left here on earth but I'm so thankful for Elsie and all the sister-time we get to share.

God has blessed me with many women friends. Some live near me. Others live in faraway countries. Some I see every few days. Others not for years at a time. A few I have never seen. These would be some of my blogging buddies. I found a "community" of women's Christian blogs a few years ago and began reading them. A few of these ladies have become close friends to me even though we've never met in person. They have prayed for me and encouraged me through many things in the past few years.

I've never met the Bible teacher Beth Moore and yet she has taught me so much through her women's ministry via Bible studies on DVD. The small group I study with at Sav-A-Life has been a huge blessing to me. Thanks Felesha for starting this study time many years ago!

And then there's my ladies Sunday school class, my pastor's wife and the other women at my church. The group has been varied. Some come and go. But each lady has impacted my life in one way or another.

Thanks to each one of you who I'm honored to call friend! Thank you for your contribution to my life! You know who you are and you know the road we've traveled together. Sometimes with laughter and joy. Other times with tears of sorrow or regret. I could not ...or at least would not want to...get along without you!

"A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother." Proverbs 18:24

May God bless you!


Friday, November 25, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 25

Day 25: I'm thankful for the sunshine today!

It has been shining outside my windows all day. Something about the sun shining always cheers me up! Makes me think about a little song we used to sing with the grandkids..."Mr. Sun, Sun, Mr. Golden Sun, please shine down on me!" But I'm guilty of taking "Mr. Sun" for granted so much of the time. Without him we would freeze here on earth! Too much of him and we would burn up! He's faithful to show up every morning. You can set your clock by him. Oh..we DO set our clocks by him! ha

I'm so glad that I know the maker of the sun....the Son of God Himself! I'm thankful for His grace and mercy and His faithfulness!

"Thy mercy, O LORD, is in the heavens; and thy faithfulness reacheth unto the clouds." Psalm 36:5

May God bless you!


Thursday, November 24, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 24

Day 24: I'm thankful for THANKSGIVING DAY !!

My favorite holiday of the year! In my opinion, the oldest, purest, truly American holiday we celebrate. New's Year's we celebrate another new year. Easter the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Memorial Day the ones who died in war. Fourth of July the birth of our free country. Labor Day the gift of having jobs. Christmas the birth of Jesus Christ. But on Thanksgiving we have a special day to give thanks to God for these and all the other things He gives us each and every day!

Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations." Psalm 100: 4-5

Today, as Christians, let us truly give thanks as we celebrate Thanksgiving and remember that all the blessings we have are because of the wonderful mercies and love of our Lord. We don’t want our children and grandchildren to ask us some day…”Can you tell me the story of how you used to have a Thanksgiving Day?” Let’s keep the day alive!

May God bless you!


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 23

Day 23: I'm thankful for memories. Last night as I pondered what I would write about today I began to think how I'm thankful for the good memories I have about so many things. My friends from schooldays. Meeting, dating and marrying Benny. Our kids in all the different stages of their lives. The births of our beautiful grandbabies. My parents. Benny's parents. In-laws. All kinds of family...close and distant. Places I've been. Things I've seen or heard. So many memories stored in our minds that we can't even remember all of them. At first I wanted to just say I'm thankful for "good" memories...because I have some bad ones also and just didn't feel very thankful for them. But then I recalled a verse from Bible study last night. One that you all will find familiar. Romans 8:28...."And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose." There are some bad memories that do serve a purpose I know. For example, as a young child I was helping Mama clean up the kitchen one day. I was bringing all the dirty dishes to the sink for her. I saw the cornbread pan sitting on top of the stove and reached out and picked it up, only to instantly drop it! I looked down at my hand and saw an ugly red blister perhaps half an inch wide and two inches long quickly developing in the palm of my hand! My hand was still small and the clear, raised blister covered almost half of my palm. I remember crying and crying! And being confused! WHY had that pan been so blazing hot? Dinner had long been over! Mama apologized and apologized for it. She explained that she had made extra cornbread for something (maybe dressing?) while we were finishing up dinner and had just taken it up and put the empty HOT pan on the stove right before I started picking up the dirty dishes. Now even after close to fifty years I am very careful to try and remember to check the temperature of a baking dish before I pick it up! Just because of the memory of that terrible burn! Our memory is such a necessary thing in life. I don't know that I've seen anything that makes me much sadder than someone who has lost their memory through either disease or some kind of trauma. It's something we all hope to escape I think. So for today, I'm thankful for memories. Good and bad. Happy and sad. I'm glad my memory is still working. Psalm 30:4 "Sing unto the LORD, O ye saints of his, and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness." May God bless you, Marilyn

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 22

Day 22: I'm thankful for honest people!

Years ago we just "expected" people to be honest. The majority of them were. It's sad but more and more honest people are becoming a rarity. Over three weeks ago I ordered some Pert Plus dandruff shampoo on eBay for my husband. I have not been able to find this for him in any of the stores I have checked for miles around our home. So we were very happy to find a seller offering this product. The seller shipped our package Priority Mail about three weeks ago. It should have taken no more than 3-5 days for it to reach us. She even paid for a delivery confirmation receipt with a tracking number.

The Post Office scanned the package the day it got to the Post Office and that's the last we've heard from it! Nothing else on the website as far as where it may be. It's lost somewhere I guess. Or perhaps in someone's shower being used. Who knows? ha

We've been in communication with the eBay seller the past couple of weeks and she has been nothing but nice. Not really her fault the package has not arrived. And yet she feels the responsibility for it. This morning when I checked my email I had a note from her saying she had refunded our money. I thought that was really "Big" of her to do that. No questions ask. Just doing what she felt was the right thing. I, in turn, will repay her the money if the package ever shows up in our mailbox as I also want to be an honest person.

2 Corinthians 8:21..."Providing for honest things, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of men."

May God bless you!


Monday, November 21, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 21

Day 21: I'm thankful for my five senses...sight, smell, hearing, touch, and taste .

I oftentimes take these senses for granted. Each one of them is so important in how we react to things in our everyday life. For instance let's talk about something as simple as a cherry pie. Would it be as good if we didn't have these five senses? Or would it even be good at all? Take an imaginary walk into my kitchen. Imagine I have a cherry pie that I have just taken out of the oven. You can SEE the beautiful flaky crust with bits of dark red cherry juice coming out the vent holes on top. Now SMELL the aroma of the cherries. Probably you could tell it was a cherry pie even if you had not seen it. But that smell makes it seem even more delicious. Perhaps you can even HEAR a few little bubbling pops as it finishes up it's cooking cycle. I cut a slice of hot-out-of-the-oven cherry pie and put it on a serving plate for you. As you pick it up, you can FEEL the warmth in your fingertips. You take the fork, cut off a bite-size portion and put it in your mouth and TASTE the delicious sweet/tart delicacy. Ahhh. The combination of all five senses gives a completeness to this experience.

Just imagine what the loss of one or more of these senses would be like. People who have lost their sense of taste or smell say that they just really don't care for food much anymore. Those who have lost their vision have to be told in very descriptive words what things look like. And people who have lost their sense of touch...for example someone with nerve damage or even leprosy...are at a very high risk of injuring themselves and not even knowing it until infection has set in.

I was remembering Helen Keller this morning. She was born missing two senses...sight and hearing. And this in turn caused her to also not be able to talk. Yet most anyone you ask will know who Helen Keller was. She was able to have a fuller life than most people even though she was what we would call severely handicapped. And it made me take a look at myself and ask this question: "Am I doing all I can with what God gave me?" I'm pretty sure I'm not. So today I want to be more aware of the blessings of my senses and all the opportunies God has given me to use them. I hope you will too!

"I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well." Psalm 139:14

May God bless you!


Sunday, November 20, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 20

Day 20: I'm thankful for good food !

Believe me, I eat my share of good food at least three times a day and sometimes more! But when I say "good", I say that loosely. I mean that it tastes good to me. It's not necessarily always food that's good for me! (Which I really should take measures to correct.) I am already thinking and planning and drooling over the menu for our annual Thanksgiving Day Dinner. It's my favorite meal of the year I believe.

And yet, in our world there are millions of people going hungry tonight. Even worse...some are dying tonight from hunger. I can't give them food off my plate but I can try to help them in some way. There are many good Christian organizations that help feed hungry people in other countries. Even here in the United States there are people who are hungry. In many big cities there are places where people can come and get a hot meal free. In our county there are the Good Samaritan centers in Walnut and Ripley that give away food to needy people.

So this next week as many of us get together with family and friends and eat a meal...or several meals...let's remember to really be thankful that we have enough to eat. And let's also pray for those who are not as fortunate as we are. Never take our blessing of food for granted!

"Give us this day our daily bread." Matthew 6:11

May God bless you!


Saturday, November 19, 2011

A Day of Thankfulness: Day 19

Day 19: I am thankful for my teeth and for good dental care!

I can just hear some of you laughing! Maybe you are thinking that I have surely run out of things to be thankful for and am grasping at straws. No! I thank God often for my teeth! All my life I have had trouble with them. When I was a little girl we didn't have dental floss or cleaning and checkups every six months. My teeth are what dentists have called "crumbly" and decayed easily even though I called myself taking care of them. My first memory of a dentist's office was when I was about five years old and it's not pretty. ha I was never a child that screamed and kicked or resisted a doctor or dentist but inside I was a scared quivering mess.

To make a long story short, I've sat in a lot of dentist chairs in my life and had a lot of metal put in my mouth! About twelve years ago I had a tooth break off....which was not an uncommon thing for me...and went to my dentist to get it fixed. Something happened that had never happened to me before. He could not get my mouth to get numb. I came back in two weeks and the same thing numbness. So for a period of two or three years I was not able to get any dental work done where I had to be numbed up. Six years ago a friend recommended a new dentist to me and she has been able to numb my mouth and take care of my dental needs ever since. And I don't take it lightly. I really do thank the Lord for my teeth almost every time I brush them.

Maybe you've always had great teeth and can't relate to my story. Then you have even more reason to be thankful ! I know a lady who only has three or four teeth left and she has such a hard time eating. But she doesn't let the lack of teeth keep her from smiling. She's thankful for what she does have. I want to be that way. Whether I have an abundance or a little in the world's eyes, I want to have a thankful heart!

May God bless you!


Friday, November 18, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 18

Day 18: I'm thankful for my cell phone.

It's almost two years old and not an iPhone. Just a plain Jane model. Oh, but it does have a QWERTY keypad which makes it sooooo much easier for me to text. And a camera. But other than that to most folks it would just be "plain". And I'm aware that it's an "extra" in my life. Something that is not a daily necessity. But how lost I feel now without one! I love being able to send a quick text to one of my kids or a friend and not have to worry that I'm interrupting something they're doing. I love the security of having it with me when I'm out in the car by myself in case I have a flat or something.

Isn't technology something? Who would have ever dreamed hundreds of years ago that they could be in instant contact with someone on the other side of the world using a small device like a cell phone? And yet God...who is more "tech-savvy" than any genius in the past, present or future...can communicate instantly with anyone immediately anytime He wants to. It's called prayer. And for that I'm very thankful !

"Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not." Jeremiah 33:3

May God bless you!


Thursday, November 17, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 17

Day 17: I'm thankful for a good night's sleep on a comfortable bed !

I know there are many people who can not say that this morning. People who for some reason did not get to sleep or did not have a bed. I'm sure there are more homeless people in this world...including our United States...than we really can imagine. There may be many reasons for a sleepless night for some. Worry. Pain. Disease. Fearfulness. Losing sleep can sure take a toll on your body. Just recently I heard a veteran of the Korean War talking on a TV documentary about his experience as a POW. He said that while in prison he was deprived of sleep for sometimes days on end and how horrible that was.

And then there's the part about the comfortable bed. You never know how much that means until you don't have one. I can remember sleeping on the cold concrete floor of the hospital room several times when staying with my Daddy when he was so sick. When feeling sorry for myself God would bring to my mind the millions of people all over the world who would be glad to have the security and safety of sleeping on the hard floor of a hospital room with their loved one! And I also can never forget our son John who slept on the ground in a tent in Iraq for months on end while fighting terrorists.

So as we turn the covers back tonight to climb into bed, let's all remember to say a prayer of thanks for that privilege!

"I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, LORD, only makest me dwell in safety." Psalm 4:8

May God bless you!


Wednesday, November 16, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 16

Day 16: I'm thankful for testimonies. (a statement made to establish a fact; an affirmation or declaration; any form of evidence; public avowal, as of faith)

As I spent this morning at a Bible Conference I heard testimonies of how God has worked in many ways in people's lives. Testimonies of how someone had come to a place of just giving up and how God met her in her laundry room and reminded her of His grace. Two pastors wives ...both widowed this year....gave testimony to God's love and presence in their lives.

I have always loved to hear people testify about what God has done in their lives. And I love to tell what He's done in mine! Today I was reminded of an old song "Let Others See Jesus in You" which starts like this:"While passing thro' this world of sin, And others your life shall view, Be clean and pure without, within, Let others see Jesus in you." And it made me wonder...DO others see Jesus in me? I sure hope so!

"And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death." Revelation 12:11

God bless you!


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 15

Day 9: I am thankful for my computer.

Yes, I am, even though it's been a bit tempermental lately! I love the way I am able to communicate with people from all sister in FL; Christian friends in the Philippines and India; friends all over the USA and in Canada, etc. Before I had a computer and email I phoned or wrote my relatives. If they lived far off I didn't call very often because back then long distance was very expensive. After I began using email I began to be in almost daily contact with some of my siblings. We became closer than we had ever been because none of us lived close in distance. But the computer closed the miles and the pictures we were able to share made it seem we were "seeing" each other often.

A few years ago one of my sons suggested I start a blog to use as an avenue to share the "articles" that I had been writing and emailing to a group of people. I didn't really even know what a "blog" was but I figured it out and started me one. As time went by I met other Christian women bloggers and have been so blessed by their writings and Christian friendship.

Then I began to hear about something called "Facebook". I was not interested in joining because at that time we had dial-up internet and I knew that it was basically impossible. Then we got satellite internet for Christmas one year and my daughter talked me into letting her set me up with a Facebook account. I have enjoyed getting to hear from friends and also getting to share my thoughts in this format.

"Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend." Proverbs 27:17


Monday, November 14, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 14

(The Yanceys in '67 and the Martins in '55)

Day 14: I'm thankful for a "goodly" heritage!

("The lines are fallen unto me in pleasant places; yea, I have a goodly heritage." Psalm 16:6)

I'm thankful today for the "goodly" heritage I have in both the Martin and the Yancey sides of my family. Both families were solid Christians and I am sure that many of the blessings I enjoy today are not because of me but because I am reaping some of the benefits of the "goodly" seeds they sowed many years ago. I hope that my children and grandchildren will be able to say the same about me in all the years to come.

God bless you!


Sunday, November 13, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 13

Day 13: I'm thankful for the beauty of nature!

I'm not much of a traveler. I like to hear people talk about their vacations to the mountains or the beach or wherever they've been but I really don't want to go and see for myself. I'm like my Mama was...just a home-body at heart. And so because of that I'm very grateful that God has seen fit to put me smack dab in the middle of some of the most beautiful country side in north Mississippi!

This has been one of the most colorful fall seasons that I remember in a long time. The trees just keep on keeping on being beautiful! Every day for the past several weeks I think to myself, "surely this won't last much longer", but it has.

God is such an awesome Artist ! Sometimes I just tell Him that very thing when I'm looking at His handiwork in nature! I'm very blessed that I can look out my windows and see trees, flowers, grass and sky and have a different portrait every season!

"Nevertheless he left not himself without witness, in that he did good, and gave us rain from heaven, and fruitful seasons, filling our hearts with food and gladness." Acts 14:17

May God bless you!


Saturday, November 12, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 12

Day 12....I'm thankful to get to be a part of our church's bus ministry.

Last month our church celebrated the 17th anniversary of having a bus ministry. Through the years we have had big school buses and we've had vans. We've had grownups, big kids, little kids, and babies ride. At one time there were kids coming from New Albany, Myrtle, Hickory Flat, Blue Mountain and Potts Camp. But now we only have one van route active so we don't have that many. My husband Benny drives the van and sometimes he does have so many kids that he has to make a second trip to be able to pick up all of them

The bus ministry isn't for every church or for every person I guess. But for Benny and me it's been a real blessing in our lives. As we get to know these people better it's amazing how attached we become to them. Some of the kids still don't know our names. But when we go out each week to visit them I sometimes hear them shout to someone in a back room..."The church folks are here!" lol

Although we do have a few adults that are faithful to come on the van, most of our riders are children. We have several that have been coming for years. Then we have others that move into town, ride the van for a few weeks and then they're gone to live somewhere else. Sometimes we only have a short little window to take them to church so the teachers can plant seeds of the gospel in their young minds. Please help us pray that these seeds will take root and help these children to come to know the most important thing they'll ever learn....that Jesus Christ came to earth and died for their sins so that they can live with him forever in heaven!

Last summer after doing some shopping in Walmart, I was sitting on a bench out in the foyer waiting for Benny (who had been somewhere else) to come and pick me up. I saw three tall teenaged boys walking in the door but didn't think anything about it until one of them started walking towards me. He had a big smile on his face and the first thing he said was ,"Do you remember me?" I remembered that smile but not his name. He had been in my Sunday school class of 1st-3rd graders ten or more years ago and still remembered me. He gave me a big hug before he went on his way into Walmart with his friends. What a blessing that was!

"But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God." Luke 18:16

God bless you!


Friday, November 11, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 11

I'm thankful for our Veterans !!

Today is Veteran's Day here in the United States of America. I'm thankful that we have men and women who have been willing to put their private lives on hold while they give literally years of their lives to the service of their country. I want to especially give thanks for my husband Benny who served in the US Army in Vietnam and to our son John who served two tours of duty in Iraq with the Marine Corps. Two of the bravest men I know. I love them both so much!

"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." John 15:13

God bless you!


Thursday, November 10, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 10

I am thankful for Sav-A-Life of Ripley.

I have been a volunteer client advocate there for over six years now and what a blessing I have received! This year we have become a medical clinic and have added an ultrasound machine and a bunch of nurses to the staff. In fact we've changed our name to My Choices Pregnancy Help Clinic but to me it will always be Sav-A-Life I guess. :)

Here girls/women can come for free pregnancy tests and an ultrasound to determine for sure they're pregnant. If the test is positive we then offer them six free individualized parenting classes. Following each class our client is given a gift bag filled with baby items...different things for each different class. Everything we offer is our clients. Our community has been so good to help keep the center going. Donations of every kind are given to the, office supplies, cleaning supplies, new baby clothes, all kinds of baby necessities....and we then pass the blessings along to the women we serve.

Working here I see such a wide range of emotions...from extreme happiness to extreme fear and despair. What a blessing it is to be able to "rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep". That's my job. To be their encourager. Their advocate. To explain their choices. And to encourage them to make the best ones for their life. Sometimes I can't sleep on the nights after I work because the voices of the women keep coming through my mind. I worry if they're ok. I wonder if they've gone to seek the special counseling I have recommended because they have a history of abuse. I hope that they are making good decisions. But in the end I just have to pray and leave it in the hands of God for He cares for them far more than we can ever begin to do at Sav-A-Life. We just want to be an extension of His Hands and be a blessing to each young girl/women who walks through the doors of our clinic.

Would you please remember My Choices Pregnancy Help Clinic in your prayers?

Thanks SO much !!


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 9

(Our 2 grandchildren love music!)
(I apologize for how this post looks! Blogger is acting crazy and try and I might I can NOT fix this!! If anybody knows what I am doing wrong, please tell me!!)
A Month of Thankfulness: Day 9....I am thankful for MUSIC !

I have always loved music! Good music was a staple in our home when I was
growing up. Our radio was often playing. Mama could play the piano a little and
I was awed by the fact that if you put your fingers on certain keys a tune would
result. I did find that when I tried it I didn't hear that same tune so I soon
learned that there was an art to it! Mama had learned to play using the old
fashioned "shape notes" and could only play in the key of C. Before I ever took
any piano lessons she let me use her book (which I still have somewhere) to
teach myself how to play using the shaped notes. Eventually I did take piano
lessons and learned that the notes didn't have to have the unique shapes to tell
me what to play...but that their position on the lines and spaces would tell
me. I have never learned to be a really good pianist but I can play enough to
be able to enjoy it.

When I was around twelve years old I wanted a guitar really bad for
Christmas. We were poor people and I was pretty sure I would not get one.
But...I did! It was a very cheap one but it was a guitar and came with an
instruction booklet. I read that booklet and learned to play. All during my
teenage years my guitar was an outlet as I sang happy songs, sad songs, and even
political songs that I had no idea what the meaning was. I don't play very much
now as it seems to aggravate the arthritis in my left hand and shoulder but I do
manage to play it some for the grandkids.

I really loved singing in the Youth Choir at FBC in Ripley as a teenager.
Robert Gray was our choir director and he knew what he was doing! The finished
product was always something that the people enjoyed hearing. But I never had a
very strong voice. I was only good as an alto background but yet always longing
to have a stronger voice. My voice is still weak but God blessed me with a
husband and three children with strong clear voices! And now I can already tell
that our two grandchildren...ages 2 and 6....have good strong voices and a good
ear that keeps them right on key! There's not much I can think of that thrills
me, or in some cases relaxes me, more than hearing one of my children sing or
play the piano!

About fourteen or fifteen years ago during our church's Wednesday night
service prior to Thanksgiving, the pastor asked each person present to tell one
thing we were thankful for. Just one. When it came my time I said "Music!"
There is an older man in our church that still to this day remembers that and
often reminds me of it. And I'm thankful for it today even more than I was then
I believe!

"Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and
admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with
grace in your hearts to the Lord." Colossians 3:16

May God bless you!


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 8

Day 8: I am thankful that we still live in a republic where we can go and
exercise our right to vote.

I plan to do that very thing sometime this
morning. I have been praying very much that God will give Mississippians the
grit to go out and vote Yes on Amendment 26 today. We have heard from both
sides. Doctors, nurses, lawyers, preachers....there are some on each side and
have very differing opinions. So could you just base your vote on the ONE thing
that we DO know? And that is that if the majority of Mississippians vote no
today, thousands of innocent babies will continue to be torn from their mother's
womb through abortion in the state of MS. That's basically the one thing we

So please pray and ask God to show you the right
answer. This verse has been on my mind this morning: "I call heaven and
earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death,
blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may
Deuteronomy 30:19

God bless you!


Monday, November 7, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 7

(Just a very few of my book collection!)

Day 7: I'm thankful for books!
I have loved books for as long as I can remember. I loved being read to before I learned to read. Ican't imagine life without books. Sometimes when I take my glasses off and look at a page of print I can feel a little of the fear a non-reader may feel. Last week I found a little booklet from where I had been in the Summer Reading Program at the Ripley Public Library in 1960 ! That would have been the summer just after I had finished first grade. And I've been a reader ever since!

When our three children came along I spent lots of time reading to them.
I can remember when they were pre-school or early elementary age that I read the
whole Little House of the Prairie series to them. Some nights I would almost
lose my voice and one of them would run to the kitchen and get me a glass of
water so that I could finish the chapter (or the book! ha) And now each of them
are great readers on their own right.

I remember a few years ago proof-reading a paper for Elizabeth for some
class in college. In it she had stated that she had "learned from Mother that
anything I want to learn to do I can find instructions for in a book". Books
were a staple in our home and still are. Books are a blessing. And the best book
in my library? The Bible. For in it are not only words but "Words of

God bless you!


Sunday, November 6, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 6

Day Six: I'm thankful for the freedom to worship! Today I can get in my car, drive to church, and worship God with other Christians. Maybe you say "So what?" to that. Then read this quote from a source that knows how easy we have it here in America: "You may be accustomed to going to church, openly worshiping the Lord, and reading your own copy of the Bible. What if even gathering even a few Christians together was illegal in your city, and there was only perhaps one copy of the Bible in your entire town? For people in Colombia, living like this is reality." This was taken from the Voice of the Martyrs website. Please go there to learn more about the Persecuted Church and to find out how to pray for them better.

Matthew 5:10-12 says: "Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you."

Exercise your privilege to meet together and worship today with other believers! There may come a day when you can not. Pray that it doesn't !!

God bless you!


Saturday, November 5, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 5

Day Five: I'm thankful for my home! I've never had a new house in my life. The little house we've called Home for the past thirty-five years is probably 75 years old or more. We just last year replace the original tin roof which had begun to leak like a seive! ha By the world's standards we don't live in a modern or expensive house. But it's served us well and I am very cozy and comfortablely snug between its four walls.

A friend of mine who does mission work in India sent me a picture of a "tent city" that is in the very large city where they live. It's a sea of blue tarps stretched over ropes stretched out like a clothes line. Entire families live together in a small little homemade tent without running water or a toilet. They cook outside over an open fire and have to walk long distances sometimes to find a place to get water. The sewage runs in the street. Not a place you'd want to visit much less live in. And yet millions do!

Why did God allow me to be born in America? Why does he let me have a home that, although small by American standards, could house several families in any third-world country? I don't have the answer. I just know that I am deeply thankful and grateful for the security and shelter I have in our home!

But as much as I love my home out here in the woods, I am looking forward to one day going to my permanent home in heaven where God is preparing a mansion for me and every other person who has trusted the eternal finished work of Jesus Christ on Calvary.

"For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house in the heavens." 2 Corinthians 5:1

Would you like to share what you're thankful for today?


Friday, November 4, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 4

Living Thankful: Day 4.....I'm thankful for the Bible....the written Holy Word of God. If it wasn't written down there's no telling what it would have turned into by now! So glad God can and does preserve His Word.

For 20-plus years, I taught Sunday school classes to small children. Often when I wanted to emphasize the importance of the written Word of God, we would play a game called "Gossip". You probably know the one I mean. I would have all the children line up and then I would whisper a sentence about some silly something to the first child. He was supposed to then turn and whisper the exact same thing to the next person in line and this was to go on down the line until it reaches the person on the end. At that point, I would ask that last person what it was he heard. It was NEVER...and I repeat NEVER...the same sentence as I had whispered to the first child! They always got a kick out of playing that and it proved the point very well. If something is repeated by mouth the chances of it getting twisted along the way are very great. On the other hand if we have something written down we can always go back to it and see for sure what it says.

"Thy WORD have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against thee." Psalm 119:11

What are you thankful for today?


Thursday, November 3, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 3

Day Three: I'm thankful for my health! And for that of my family. God has blessed us so much in this area and I never want to take it for granted!
I often think about people who are blind, or deaf, or whose heart, lungs, kidneys or other organs have stopped functioning, or those who can not walk or get out of bed without help...or perhaps not at all. So many people in the world don't have good health. And yet a lot of them have better attitudes about their life than I sometimes do about mine!
Good health is a wonderful thing. But it's not the best thing in and of itself. A healthy mind is even better than a healthy body. And a healthy heart (spiritually speaking) is better yet!
I believe Psalm 43:5 says well what I feel: "Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God."
Join me today in praising God for health...whether it be physical, mental, spiritual or all three!
God bless you!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day 2

Day Two: I'm thankful for my family! I'm grateful every day that God has put me smack-dab in the middle of a wonderful family! Each one of them...from the oldest (that would be husband Benny) down to the youngest (grandson Miles)... holds a special part of my heart! I've often told people that it just "lights up the room" for me when one of my kids or grandkids walk through the door. I love all of them so much.
For many many years now one of my favorite verses has been III John verse 4..."I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth." It makes me smile just to read it now!
I'm also thankful for my extended family. And my church family.
God bless you!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A Month of Thankfulness: Day One

Inspired by my friend Leah over at The Point Ministries today, I also want to make the month of November one of thankfulness. I don't want to wait until November 24, Thanksgiving Day, to start being thankful. I have tried to be more aware of my blessings and therefore giving thanks more often in the past year or so. But to do a whole month of daily thanks...with a purposeful heart...seemed like a challenge I'd like to take. I could never list in thirty days all that I'm thankful for but hopefully it will help me keep thankfulness constantly on my mind!
Day One: I'm thankful for salvation. I'm so thankful that God made a way for me to live forever in His presence. I would never make it if I had to earn my way to heaven. The Bible tells us that the law was given as a "school master" to show us that there's no one who can actually keep all the law. No one that is except for Jesus Christ. He came and lived a sinless life so that He could pay for my sins. Wow! What a gift! "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." Romans 6:23
But as Leah also said, it's not just that we get to go to heaven because of salvation but we get to have the Holy Spirit living inside us right now! He will lead and guide and show us how we should live if we will listen.